SLO County seniors lose Medicare health plan coverage
Morro Bay resident George Garrigues received sudden information when a letter arrived in the mail, informing him that he has until finally Aug. 1 to locate a new Medicare insurance plan company.
“It was a surprise,” the retired journalism professor reported. “And August is not far too considerably absent.”
Garrigues, who is 90 decades outdated, enrolled in the Golden Point out Medicare Wellness System when he moved to San Luis Obispo County right after several years working with the Kaiser Permanente method.
The California Department of Managed Well being Care, the condition company governing managed wellbeing treatment ideas, ordered Golden Condition Medicare Health Program to conclude all current contracts with present-day shoppers on or in advance of June 1, with Medicare protection ending on August 1, in accordance to a settlement agreement dated February 2022.
The key motive Golden Condition Medicare Overall health System dropped its Medicare license was its failure to retain fantastic economical standing. The health program was running at a deficit of about $35 million as of December 2021, according to the settlement arrangement.
“Given (Golden Condition Medicare Health Approach)‘s dire money problem and its crystal clear incapacity to operate its small business in a method to allow for it to comply with even the least monetary necessities of all (state) licensees, revocation of (its) health system license is appropriate and urgent,” in accordance to a July 2021 court filing outlining the accusations from Golden Condition.
The Golden State Medicare Well being Approach serviced about 4,966 customers as of April 2021, according to the July 2021 court filing.
Shoppers of Golden Point out were being distribute all over 8 California counties, including San Luis Obispo, according to a 2022 summary of rewards.
Seniors with Golden Condition Medicare Well being Plan look for for new insurance
Garrigues advised The Tribune that when he chose the Golden Condition Medicare Health and fitness Plan, he did not meet with a Health and fitness Insurance policy Counseling & Advocacy Program (HICAP) supplier first.
HICAP is a statewide network of nonprofit businesses that are qualified to give impartial information and facts about Medicare choices to seniors.
But now that his Medicare coverage is remaining discontinued, Garrigues explained he desired to know his well being plan alternatives.
Garrigues said he called a variety of HICAP companies but it was tricky to get an appointment.
He drove from Morro Bay to the Central Coast Fee for Senior Citizens business office in Santa Maria, which serves San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties, to discuss about well being options on Wednesday.
During his appointment, the HICAP advisor reviewed different health plan choices with Garrigues and served him make a decision about the plan that finest fits his requires, he mentioned.
By the time his appointment was around, Garrigues resolved on a new Medicare wellbeing prepare.
SLO County inhabitants with inquiries about the suspension of the Golden State Medicare Overall health Strategy, or other health insurance policies thoughts, can make an appointment with a SLO County HICAP provider by calling 805-928-5663 or going to centralcoastseniors.org/hicap.
This story was at first printed June 22, 2022 2:13 PM.