When you receive a prescription from your doctor, you may be uncertain how much of the cost will be covered by your insurance. You may wonder, “Can I afford this medication?” Sometimes the answer to this question may be hard to find. Understanding the insurance company terms can help you as you fill your prescriptions for your medications.

There are several Medicare as well as charity run prescription drug plans that cater to serving senior citizens and that can often help them pay for any medications they need. The cost for the coverage varies, and some agencies may provide plans for free while others come with low costs. Many pharmaceutical companies also provide free financial assistance to the elderly in an effort to lower some of the costs for them.

There are a number of prescription drug assistance programs in each state of the U.S. Some of these programs, such as the Extra Help program, are designed to support Medicare beneficiaries, while some other available resources can also support state residents who are not enrolled in Medicare.

After you retire, you may discover that you want to return to work—for an extra stream of income, or for the benefits of activity and a second career. Whatever the reason, it’s helpful to plan ahead, because your Social Security benefits, health insurance and tax situation may be affected.

For retirees who are relieved their Social Security benefits are getting a slight boost next year, the celebration shouldn't start quite yet. The extra money could get eaten up by Medicare premiums for about 70 percent of retirees, according to The Senior Citizens League.

Senate Republicans unveiled their version of a replacement bill for the Affordable Care Act this week.

While it was not materially that different from the House version passed earlier this year, there are still several key points for insurers to understand if it becomes law. Ben Isgur,  leader of PwC's Health Research Institute, says it starts with the viability of the online insurance exchanges that served as the backbone for expanding coverage in the individual market.

"The big change for payers is that the current language has more money in to shore up the insurance exchanges," Isgur says. That amount comes to about $50 billion through 2020. However, he warns, "we have to see where this legislative language truly ends up."

That's because insurers could take two paths with that funding. On one hand, "Insurers could look at these next few years as continuing to shore up the exchanges and provide insurance in these counties," Isgur explains. But, he adds. "It could continue to be a 'wait and see.' There’s still uncertainty about how carriers are going to participate in Medicaid and what their businesses are going to look like."

As the older adult population grows and life expectancies continue to increase, more and more Americans face the difficult prospect of having to pay for costly long-term care. One of the ways consumers are answering this challenge is by purchasing long-term care insurance in order to help manage the sometimes overwhelming costs of care.