Medicare is a federal health insurance program for people who are over 65, younger people with disabilities, and people with End-Stage Renal disease. As well as this, it is made up of different kinds of parts/insurances. Hospital, medical and drug coverage are all a part of the different plans and Medicare can help you cover the costs of these services. As well as this, Medigap plan coverage can help supplement your plan. However, it can be a tricky thing to get your head around and so this article will hopefully make things a little clearer for you.
The Four Parts of Medicare
There are four separate parts to Medicare and whilst some are mandatory others are optional and will depend on your income and situation.
Medicare Part A: Hospital Insurance
This covers the cost of hospitalization. Once enrolled on Medicare, you receive Part A automatically. There is no monthly cost for most people but there can be some deductible charges due from 2021. This includes services such as surgeries, hospice care, and inpatient care. This may seem simple, but it is important to look at the small print. For example, if you are in hospital for more than 60 days you are due to pay for daily expenses.
Medicare Part B: Doctors and Tests
This covers a long list of medical services such as equipment, doctors’ visits, care, purchase of blood, and cancer treatment. This is not a mandatory cover, however, if you have coverage from another source such as an employer. You will need to pay a penalty if you don’t enroll in this coverage and you aren’t covered by your employer. There is an annual payment for this service that you should know about as well.
Medicare Part C: Medicare Advantage
This is an alternative Medicare coverage. It includes a combination of plans A, B, and D which is a drug prescription plan. For some people, this works out much better than buying each of the plans separately. You may not need to pay a premium for part C but there will still be one due for part B. It is worth looking at all your options for this plan.
Medicare Part D: Prescription Drugs
This is administered by private insurance companies. This is optional but it is usually included in a plan by Part C. Prescription drug plans have a coverage gap, a limit on what the plan covers. This happens when you have spent a certain amount. You can get out of this if you pay a certain amount, and your coverage will kick back in.
Even with all of the insurance, you may still incur sizeable bills. To cover these costs, you can enroll in Medigap coverage. It is a supplement to Medicare and cannot be used independently of it. This can help you be covered for all possibilities rather than falling through the cracks.
This is a complicated field, and it is always worth seeking out advice and help. Look for what plans will suit your lifestyle and make sure you can afford it. It is essential to look after yourself and your finances.