If you follow the Shop & Enroll blog, you probably have a pretty good idea about the parts of the Medicare program. The only question that remains is do you qualify for the Medicare program?

Isn’t It Based on Age?

There are actually a few boxes that you can tick to be eligible for the Medicare program. The first of these is to be 65 or older. This is the simplest way to qualify for the Medicare program. All you need is patience.

I’m Not 65. Does That Mean I Can’t Enroll?

No, that’s not always the case. While being 65 is the most common way to qualify, it’s not the only method. If you receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), you’ll be automatically enrolled into the Medicare program once you roll into the 25th month of receiving SSDI checks. One exception, which begins your eligibility immediately, is if you have Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, better known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease or ALS.

Additionally, you’re eligible for Medicare insurance if you have End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) and are undergoing dialysis treatments or receiving a kidney transplant.

Are There Other Criteria?

There are other factors that affect what you’ll pay for your coverage. If you or your spouse paid Medicare taxes during at least 10 years of work, you qualify for “premium-free” Part A coverage. If you don’t have enough credits, you can still get Medicare, but you must pay for your Part A coverage.

Finally, to qualify, you must be a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident who’s been here for at least five years. You automatically qualify if you were a Federal employee on January 1, 1983.

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If you want to learn more about enrolling in Medicare, contact a licensed sales agent. If you don’t know how to get in touch with one, Shop & Enroll is a great place to start.

Further Reading

HHS.gov — Who is eligible for the Medicare program?