Seniors Confused about Medicare and ObamaCare?

With healthcare changing daily, seniors are confused. What is the Affordable Care Act?  How does it differ from Medicare?  This is especially true as the enrollment periods overlap.  Seniors have found it hard to differentiate and make decisions. But the most important thing seniors need to know is that Medicare and the health plans offered under ObamaCare are completely different. 

Happy senior citizen couple using laptop computer at home

“About 17% of seniors incorrectly believe the Affordable Care Act replaces their Medicare with insurance policies purchased online through the state and federal health insurance exchanges, according to a study released last year by USA Today. 

Confusion has led to unnecessary decisions. At first some of the confusion was created intentionally when advertising picked up from opponents to the law, Rabbitt said. Other questions arose because seniors said they don’t trust any one source for information, and some sources give different answers.

The confusion caused seniors to make unnecessary decisions about spending, she said. Some even went back to work.

“The fear of the unknown causes them to look at their budget,” she said. “They’re refilling prescriptions later, or skipping doses to make them last longer. That can lead to higher medical costs.”

The survey found about a third of seniors thought the eligibility age goes up to 68 in January  of this year because of the law — also incorrect.

USA Today Survey

Medicare Isn’t Changing. As Medicare and ObamaCare open enrollments start up this year, seniors need to know that  Medicare isn’t changing.  Seniors’ Medicare enrollment period started October 15 and they will enroll the same way they have for the past 8 years. Enrollment for Medicare ends December 7.   And remember, seniors do NOT have to worry about open enrollment for ObamaCare, which starts November 15th.   

Doctor’s offices should be educating patients to make sure they don’t mistakenly change their coverage or stop taking medications for fear of lack of coverage.  Education is key.


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