Medicare is a government health insurance program for:
Original Medicare is a term often used to describe Part A & Part B.
(Hospital Insurance) – Part A helps cover inpatient care in hospitals, including critical access hospitals, and skilled nursing facilities (not custodial or long-term care). It also helps cover some approved hospice care and some home health care. Beneficiaries must meet certain conditions to get these benefits. Most people don’t pay a premium for Part A because they or a spouse already paid for it through their payroll taxes while working. Some specific deductibles and copays are part of Part A.
(Medical Insurance) – Part B helps cover doctors’ services and outpatient care. It also covers some other medical services that Part A doesn’t cover, such as some of the services of physical and occupational therapists, and some home health care. Part B helps pay for these covered services and supplies when they are medically necessary. Most people pay a monthly premium for Part B. Some specific deductibles and copays are part of Part B.
Medicare Advantage is a Medicare-approved plan from a private company that offers an alternative to Original Medicare for your health and drug coverage. These “bundled” plans include Part A, Part B, and usually Part D.
These “bundled” plans include Part A, Part B, and usually Part D and add in some extra benefits (that Original Medicare doesn’t cover – like vision, hearing, and dental services). You must have both Part A and Part B to join a Medicare Advantage Plan.
Prescription Drug Coverage Medicare prescription drug coverage is available to everyone with Medicare. To get Medicare prescription drug coverage, people must join a plan approved by Medicare that offers Medicare drug coverage.
Medicare Supplement (Medigap) is a Medicare-approved plan from a private company that works with original Medicare to fill in many of the financial “gaps” left by Medicare – copays, coinsurance, and deductibles. If you choose this route, it is important to consider your prescription drug coverage options.