Saw my onco Thursday. I have dealing with a mess between my benefits and Medicare for the past 3 weeks. This has been even more frustrating and stressfull than all of the cancer treatments combined. I found out on April 11 that my medical ins became secondary to medicare, yet I did not take part B because I was told by benefits dept that they had extended my full benefits. Verified with medicare that because I workrd for a.company with over 100 employees that medicare would be secondary and therefore, no reason to be paying dual premiums. This was in Dec. Got letter from company bene's in Feb. stating premiums would drop to 6. dollars, called them, was told that was an error, asked again if I needed to get part B was told, nothing was changing it was a mistake in the system that they corrected it, my premium would be continuing at the regular rate as they extended bene's. I called medicare they informed me that if there was a change dut to ins. changing I would just need to go to ssi and fill out a form 40B and as long as I was in the initial enrollment they would date it back. Then on April 10th I went to cancer center and was told my bill was really high did I want to meke a payment.
My advocate thru the center called my ins co the next day, and they informed her that because I did not take part b, I was only being covered bymedicaee parttA.
So I called my benefit dept as well as Medicare and was again told by medicare not an issue, just go to ssi and fill out 40 B. I did, when I saw the caseworker she stated that did not apply to me because I was under a contracted cobra policy, and ins said they were penalizizing me for not taking part B. Yet company has still continued to take full primiums from checking. Worse part was how rudely I was treated at the ssi office.
The next day my benefits called and conferenced in medicare where they were given the same info, my caseworker got 2 supervisors and it took them 15 minutes with medicare to figure out the whole cobra factor. Then my caseworker from my company benefits said I should have known this. Finally, the medicre man said how would she know this when we were both giving out wrong info. He then escalated to his next level and my benefit dept also escalated. The lady at ssi the day before denied the part B, So now I have to appeal it. Mbenefits called On Friday and said due to the misinfo they had given they will extend until medicare picks up. Then I got a call from the escalateed medicare stating that I have to fill out another form and go back to ssi and appeal all of this due to misinfo given by 1800 medicare. He said call dept of aging. whrn I did I was told that he told me the wrong form. 2 days later they called back and said that was the right form. I have not gotten the same info from any rep in the medicare, but at least they treat me better than the ssi employees.
At this oint, my onco is continuing chemo for 4 more treatments which I get weekly, then we are stopping all chmo. At this point I cant feel any difference in pain levels, in fact my ribs and chest are worse as well as the pain in my right hip is increasing. We will do a bone scan or CT Scan when all the ins mess is done with, but it appears that my body is not responding to the Adriamycin either. Dr says cant stay on the chemo indefinately as my immune system is not tolerating it so well. This is after 2 1/2 years of weekly chemo.... part of me is so tired that I want to stop and have quality, and the oher part of me says insist on going regardless how i feel. My boys say to get some quality in my life ie. no chemo, but they understand and support whatever I decide.
Between chemo and fighting with ssi, I am worn out.
Just a forward, take part b when offeredFrustrated and tired,