GEHA Basic and Medicare Part A and B


Q: I have GEHA Basic and Medicare Part A and B. I take no prescriptions and go to the doctor very little, mostly to have tests done. I am considering dropping my Medicare B as I will have GEHA and Medicare A. I am interested in an unbiased answer.

A: Decisions like this are always personal. However, there are two things to consider before making a decision about dropping Medicare Part B. First, you need to review what benefits are included in Part B and decide whether you will need anything it covers that is not provided by your FEHB plan either now or in the future. Second, you need to be aware that if you drop your Part B coverage and want to re-enroll at a later date, you’ll have to wait for a general enrollment period, which is between Jan.1 and March 31 each year, wait for the coverage to be effective, which won’t start until the following July, and pay a 10 percent penalty for each full year you could have been enrolled in Part B but weren’t.


About Author

Reg Jones was head of retirement and insurance policy at the Office of Personnel Management. Email your retirement-related questions to


  1. Bonnie Braeuel on

    I am a Federal retiree on Medicare parts A & B and also have Geha, standard option which covers parts of my prescription costs. I was thinking about getting Medicare part D just to be safe. I was told that if I sign up for Medicare part D that Geha will drop me… Is this a fact???? Doesn’t sound feasible to me. I am a “What IF” type person and believe in being prepared….

    • Nonsense! According to Medicare, “The Federal Employee Health Benefits (FEHB) Program plans usually include prescription drug coverage, so you don’t need to join a Medicare drug plan. However, if you decide to join a Medicare drug plan, you can keep your FEHB plan, and your plan will let you know who pays first.”

  2. Stan Rosenblatt on

    Good morning, I am a retired fed. I have continued my GEHA high option plan. In a year I will be eligible for Medicare A & B and I plan to sign up for both. Would it make good sense to change from high to standard option?

    • We aren’t in a position to decide whether it makes good sense. What we can say is that many retirees who have moved from high to standard option have told us that they are happy with their decision.

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