Mobile phones are the most essential piece of gadget, and for older people, they can be a lifesaver device. However, not many senior citizens are not able to afford a phone. Thanks to Medicare, they can get free cell phones. So, how do you get free cell phones for seniors on Medicare?
Seniors citizens with less income are eligible for free cell phones from the government. Individuals over the age of 65 may qualify for free mobile phones via lifeline assistance. Seniors who receive Medicare are eligible to apply for Lifeline and get a free cell phone.
Thus, if you are a senior citizen yourself or you have someone old in your family who can’t afford a cell phone, this guide can help you get a phone for them.
What is Medicaid?
Millions of Americans, especially qualifying poor individuals, kids, pregnant women, older individuals, and disabled individuals, have access to medical care through Medicaid. Since each state is responsible for managing Medicaid, different forms may have specific eligibility standards.
The program is where most Americans get their long-term care insurance. Most Medicaid beneficiaries do not have access to alternative cheap health insurance. Medicaid restricts enrollment out-of-pocket expenses while providing coverage for a variety of healthcare services.
Significant Things that Medicaid Covers:
- Children Vaccination shots
- Pregnancy care
- Doctor Appointments and visits
- Hospital stay
- X-ray and other tests
What is Medicare?
Medicare is like a health insurance program targeted at old people over 65 and young people with impairments or kidney problems. One must choose how one will obtain Medicare coverage after enrolling.
There are two types of coverage that Medicare offers. They are as follows.
This coverage will not cover all your medical costs. As you receive services, you pay for them. When you get treatments, you’ll spend a threshold at the beginning of every year and a copay, typically 20% of the price of the Medicare-approved treatment.
Medicare Advantage is a corporate firm’s Medicare-approved healthcare and medication care option that provides an alternative to Original Medicare and adds more extra services like covering costs of many medical services like vision, dental and more.
Medicare and Medicaid: What is The Difference?
Down below, we will look into the differences between Medicare and Medicaid.
|Eligibility||Anyone over 65 years of age or with certain disabilities||People with low income or who fall under special conditions.|
|Cost||Small monthly premiums||No payment in most cases|
|Coverage||Provides hospitals, insurance plans, and more.||Offers more services than Medicaid like dental, eyes, physical tests, pregnancy checkups, and even vaccination shots for children.|
Not everyone is eligible for Medicare and Medicaid, there are certain criteria that must be followed to be selected for these.
Anyone over the age of 65 is eligible for receiving government-free Medicare. Along with those with chronic renal disease who need dialysis or a transplant, younger persons with impairments can also qualify for Medicare.
Whereas for Medicaid there are no specific age requirements. Having a handicap, having a family member with a disability, or being over 65 are all qualifying circumstances.
If your income is less than 138 percent of the poverty threshold, you may also qualify. Medicaid is also available to expectant mothers if they cannot pay the price of their care.
The Medicare program is intended to assist seniors in paying for healthcare, but it isn’t entirely free. Costs for each component of Medicare vary and may include copay, premiums, and monthly payments.
Medicaid, on the other hand, offers low-income individuals and children free health coverage. It may also offer coverage for overdue medical expenses going back up to 90 days.
Medicaid covers a variety of direct financings, such as inpatient and outpatient hospital care, medically necessary, test and x-ray services, along with home health care.
On the other hand, Medicare provides hospital insurance plans where it will cover all your basic treatment costs.
How Can I Get Free Cell Phones For Seniors On Medicare?
A free cell phone is provided by the government to eligible citizens through the Lifeline Program. According to our guide on how to get a free smartphone from the government, there are many ways to take advantage of this program, and Medicare is one.
Lifeline offers free cell phones based on income. The government may offer free cell phones to Medicare recipients. Lifeline is not automatically available to seniors who participate in Medicare. Seniors are still eligible if they can prove they are low-income.
Their income should be at or below the poverty line in their state to qualify for free cell phones. Lifeline is only available to one household per year.
- Make sure your income is sufficient;
- Research which participating communication providers are available in your state;
- Please fill out the application form with detailed information, such as your name, address, and Social Security number;
- Please submit the application form along with the required documents. You can submit it through the website, over the phone, or by mail. A government-issued photo ID and proof of income are required;
- You will receive your new cell phone once the provider approves your application. Your cell phone may take a week or more to arrive depending on your provider.
Who can Apply for Free cell phones?
The first thing to consider is whether or not you can apply for free cell phones. There are specific criteria for being eligible under this program. The first criteria are that your income is low and you are aged 65 or more.
Other than low income, few other criteria can make you eligible for free phones. If you are part of any of these programs below, then you are also eligible.
- Federal Public Housing Assistance (FPHA)
- Veterans Pensions or Survivors Pension
- Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
Few rules to keep in mind
There are a few rules that you need to keep in mind while applying for free cell phones on Medicare.
- People are only permitted one phone in each home.
- You cannot utilize the scheme to obtain a dual mobile phone and a landline. They will only give you either a mobile phone or a landline.
Filling up Application Form
You will need to fill out an application form. The form is available on the website, nv.fcc.gov/lifeline. After going to the website, you should sign up with a nearby operator of your choosing.
There is an alternative method, though, if applying seems unclear to you. You can start applying through an operator that provides Lifeline Assistance in your region. The majority of carriers also provide you with the choice of using online or by regular mail.
Finding Wireless Support
When your application is approved, you will need to find a wireless provider with lifeline support access. You can utilize data.usac.org as a tool for that aim. You only need to click the “Search” button after entering your zip code or city and state.
If you have followed all the steps we discussed above, you should have no problem getting a free cell phone via Medicare.
Senior Friendly Cell Phone Features
As most senior citizens are not that well adapted to the latest technologies. It is important that their phones are well adapted with few features to make their life easier, which is the primary goal of giving them free phones.
Big Battery Life
Big battery life is the most crucial feature of any senior-friendly phone. They often forget to charge their phone, which is natural for old people. So, the phone must have a large battery to give them a proper backup for a few days.
The phone must have an SOS or emergency call option. This one-way SOS button can be the tiniest margin between life and death. During an emergency, when they cannot dial the whole number, this one button can directly call the hospital or their selected contact.
Large and Vibrant Display
Senior-friendly phones need to have vivid screens because roughly 20% of persons over 65 have vision impairment. Additionally, displays must have a high resolution and the ability to change the font size to a very big size.
Voice assistant is another must-have feature in senior-friendly phones as older adults sometimes have a tough time typing on the phone. Using this practical function may make it simple to receive texts, seek up any info, and even create alerts.
Just like vision problems, a high proportion of people over 65 years of age suffer from some hearing issues. Thus, it is important that the phone for them comes with loudspeakers so they can hear sounds easily.
Cell phones are one of the most essential gadgets for senior citizens, but not everyone can afford them. That is when Medicare comes to the rescue, their innovative plan makes it possible for older people with low incomes to get new phones for free.
However, to get enlisted into their scheme, you must be eligible and follow a few guidelines, which we have discussed in our article today. Make sure to read this article properly if you want to be a part of this free cell phone for the senior program.