Retired couples' healthcare costs: $240K

May 24, 2012 at 1:54 AM
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SAN FRANCISCO, May 24 (UPI) -- A 65-year-old U.S. couple retiring in 2012 will spend at least $240,000 for healthcare costs in retirement, officials of Fidelity Investments say.

The latest estimate from Fidelity Investments on healthcare out-of-pocket costs for a U.S. retired couple at age 65 in 2012 does not include long-term-care costs, over-the-counter medications or most dental costs, Marketwatch reported. The $240,000 estimate is based on average life expectancy for a 65-year-old man in 2012, age 82, and a 65-year-old woman, age 85 -- but half of U.S. retirees will live longer than that, company officials said.

Fidelity's 65-year-old couple, retiring this year with $75,000 in household income, should expect to pay about $10,500 for healthcare costs not included in Medicare.

Henry Hebeler, 78, a former Boeing executive who created AnalyzeNow.com, a retirement-planning Web site, shares his medical expenses to help others prepare for retirement. Hebeler and his wife are in good health but spent about $40,000 in annual medical expenses for two years, even with Medicare.

Some Medicare premiums are deducted directly from Social Security checks, but Medicare Part B -- which covers doctors and some other services not covered by Part A, which covers hospital services -- currently costs a couple about $2,400 per year. Most retirees buy Part D coverage for prescription drugs.

A Medigap policy, which covers expenses not covered by Medicare, could cost a couple about $4,000 a year.

"Medicare covers 80 percent of your doctor's bill and a good deal of your hospital bills," Hebeler said in a statement.

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