Medicare Part B


Q. I turned 65 last October and was under the impression that I had to sign up for Medicare. I am a retired Federal Aviation Administration employee with Blue Cross Blue Shield health insurance.

I have three prescriptions and a regular, semi-annual medical exam. With BCBS I pay $25 co-pay for each office visit. My co-pay for my quarterly prescriptions with only BCBS is around $22. I am paying $365 every quarter for medicare and it eliminates my semi-annual co-pay for physical exams and reduces my quarterly prescription co-pay to $5 — so roughly $200 in routine medical expenses with BCBS and combined with medicare down to $20. I pay more than twice the $180 annual savings in just one quarterly medicare payment.

What’s the downside to not carrying Medicare Part B?

A. I don’t recommend that anyone pay for Medicare Part B unless they are confident that they will get out of it at least what they put into it. You are not required to carry it and it doesn’t sound like you should.


About Author

Mike Miles is a Certified Financial Planner licensee and principal adviser for Variplan LLC, an independent fiduciary in Vienna, Virginia. Email your financial questions to and view his blog at

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