What A Drag — At 104 — It Is Getting Old

My first blog post since turning 104 on the 4th of July! Yes, I’m still here and with plenty to say.

For years my Medicare supplemental insurance premium with Anthem Blue Cross of California has been automatically deducted from my checking account. I visit my local Citibank branch in Westlake Village, California (where everyone does know my name!) around the 5th of each month to verify my monthly social security payment has been automatically debited, withdraw my $200.00 in spending cash for the month, and ensure ample funds remain to cover my monthly premium due Anthem Blue Cross of California.

The month of July was no exception. Just after my birthday, I visited my bank branch and verified everything was in place. Imagine my shock — and anger — two weeks later when I received a letter from Anthem Blue Cross of California informing me insufficient funds existed in my account on July 7th when their monthly automatic withdrawal was attempted. The letter stated I was no longer eligible for automatic withdrawal and I had to pay two months of dues in advance to keep my coverage.

Lisa stepped in at that point, calling my banking officer and Anthem Blue Cross of California. The mick jaggerbank officer confirmed more than enough funds were present in my account to cover the automatic withdrawal. A representative for Anthem Blue Cross wasn’t able to tell me anything more than what their letter stated.

My options now are to write a check to Anthem Blue Cross of California every two months, or enroll online and have Lisa pay my dues. I opted for the latter, watching Lisa spend 30 minutes only to register me as an online payment subscriber.

My coverage is safe, but I hate to think how many other seniors received a letter like I did, thought it was a mistake, and took no action. I’m sure they are out there, uninsured by their Medicare supplement, only to discover the error when he or she needs that coverage but finds out it’s too late because his or her coverage has been canceled. What a drag it is getting old.