Myths & Facts about Medicare

Here are some Myths and Facts about Medicare:

Myth:  I will automatically be enrolled into Medicare when I turn 65.
Fact:  TRUE – If you are 65 AND receiving your Social Security benefits. OR if you are under 65 but qualify for Medicare after 24 months of disability.
IF you are not receiving your Social Security benefits, you will need to enroll online at or in person at the Social Security Administration office within the 7-month window to avoid late enrollment penalties.

Myth:  You can enroll in Medicare and change your plan at any time.

Fact:  There are specific enrollment dates during the year when you can enroll or make changes. Call Hawaii SHIP for important information about deadlines to avoid late enrollment penalties and to ensure you pick the plan that best fits your needs.

Myth:  Medicare costs and coverage are the same from year to year.

Fact:  Medicare costs and coverage may change each year. Please contact Hawaii SHIP for a free copy of the Medicare and You booklet or contact your Medicare Advantage plan to receive a Summary of Benefits for your plan.


This project was supported, in part by grant number 90SAPG0005, from the U.S. Administration for Community Living, Department of Health and Human Services. Grantees undertaking projects under government sponsorships are encouraged to express freely their findings and conclusions. Points of view or opinions do not, therefore, necessarily represent official Administration for Community Living policy.

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