Medicare can available for people with disabilities who are under age 65. Individuals must have received Social Security Disability benefits for 24 months or have End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) or Amyotropic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease). There is a five month waiting period after a beneficiary is determined to be disabled before a beneficiary begins to collect Social Security Disability benefits. People with ESRD and ALS, in contrast to persons with other causes of disability, do not have to collect benefits for 24 months in order to be eligible for Medicare.
The requirements for Medicare eligibility for people with ESRD and ALS are:
ESRD – Generally 3 months after a course of regular dialysis begins or after a kidney transplant
ALS – Immediately upon collecting Social Security Disability benefits.
People who meet all the criteria for Social Security Disability are generally automatically enrolled in Parts A and B. People who meet the standards, but do not qualify for Social Security benefits, can purchase Medicare by paying a monthly Part A premium, in addition to the monthly Part B premium.
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