When estimating what you will need in health care costs at retirement, take into account that Medicare covers much less than traditional employer plans. You will need to have a plan for physician services, for prescription drugs and possibly hospitalization. There will also be deductibles and coinsurance payments and do know that vision and hearing aids are generally not covered. According to research Medicare covers only 51 percent of healthcare services.
Make sure you compute the cost of health care into your retirement savings. Some people will consider moving to warmer climates to avoid the snow and ice and to reduce expenses, but do not realize that health care in some warmer states is much higher than in colder climes. Many retirees do not realize that health care costs are their most expensive cost of living expenditures.
Retirees generally pay for insurance that supplements their Medicare policy and it is important to know what each plan will cover above and beyond Medicare. Often the biggest fear for retirees is not being able to choose the doctors they want so they do set aside savings for health care needs. “It is advisable,” state financial planners,” that you set aside at least 5 percent of your annual retirement budget for health-related costs and deductibles.”
Be aware that Medicare or an individual health insurance plan may not cover the costs of high quality brand name drugs. Most insurance companies will cover generic drugs, but that may not be what you are prescribed. Savings for prescriptions are also a necessity. It is suggested that you purchase a high-deductible plan and use a health savings account to cover out of pocket expenses.
There is always the necessity of long-term care insurance. Up to 50 percent of those who are 65 and older will need long terms care. Long term care can run upwards of $75,000 per year and the question is how are you going to cover those long term care costs? Research purchasing long term care policies which are very expensive, but these policies may be necessary to defray the cost of long term care. Most care facilities with medications run upwards of $10,000 per month.
The bottom line is do you have enough saved for both your living and health care expenses? Look into insurance plans that will supplement your Medicare insurance at a premium rate, research long term care, and save more than you think you will need for retirement.