easy peasy

If you are on Medicare and also receive social security, the government automatically deducts your Medicare monthly premium from your social security payment. (Yes, you have to pay for Medicare). If you do not receive social security but do receive Medicare, you can pay your monthly Medicare premium by check - OR Medicare offers "Easy Pay" which automatically deducts your monthly Medicare premium from your checking or savings account. Sounds quick and easy, doesn't it? Easy peasy. It's not. Here are the word-for-word instructions on how to sign up for Medicare Easy Pay, as per the Medicare.gov website:

Medicare Easy Pay is a free, electronic payment option that allows people to have their Medicare premium payments automatically deducted from a savings or checking account each month.

Who can sign up for Medicare Easy Pay?

Anyone who gets a bill for their Medicare premiums from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) can sign up at anytime.

How do I sign up?

Mail a completed Authorization Agreement for Pre-authorized Payments form [PDF, 117 KB] (SF-5510) to:

Medicare Premium Collection Center PO Box 979098 St. Louis, MO 63197-9000

What happens once I sign up?

We’ll process your form once we get it. Sometimes this can take 6-8 weeks. If we can’t process your MEP application, we’ll return your form to you with a letter explaining why.

Really? You have to print out the Easy Pay form, fill it out by hand, and submit it by snail mail? And they respond by snail mail? And it takes them 6-8 weeks to process an "Easy Pay" form? And they call this "Easy Pay"? There's nothing easy about it! Welcome to the government. Circa 1980.

Here's how it SHOULD work ...

Medicare subscribers should be able to sign up for Easy Pay - fast - online - and it should take less than a week for the government to process it. That's how it would work in the Real World!