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What Does Medicare Cover?

Aug 09, 2018

Health insurance is certainly one of the hot topics among America today. The cost of healthcare seems to be reaching incredibly high levels. Medicare was introduced in an effort to provide senior citizens with the kind of healthcare coverage that they need as they move through the later stages of their life.

The downside is that Medicare can be very confusing to a lot of people. There’s so many different versions of it that it may be very difficult for someone approaching 65 to find the coverage they really need. That kind of issue is really not something that people want to have to deal with during their senior years. It’s good to know how Medicare works and what it will cover.

How Does Medicare Work?

Medicare works by dividing coverage into multiple parts. The parts of Medicare are based on the different health requirements of the individual. Medicare has evolved over the years, so part A and part B of Medicare coverage are considered the “original” aspects of Medicare. Parts C and D have been added on to them. So what does this all entail? Here’s what the different parts cover:

  • Part A: This part of medicare is intended for what’s known as “inpatient” services. These are services where the patient will have to remain in the location of the service. Hospital stays and nursing care would be covered under this section.
  • Part B: Conversely to Part A, Part B covers the “outpatient” services. This is the trips to a doctor or diagnostic treatments that are required where the patient will return immediately home upon completion.
  • Part C: This is called the “Medicare Advantage” plan. This is offered through private health insurance. It offers additional benefits and will often cover deductibles, copayments or other services. It still includes the first two parts of Medicare.
  • Part D: Prescription drugs can be very expensive. Part D is the plan intended to cover those costs. As with Part C, it’s only viable through private health insurance plans.

What You Need for Medicare

In order to qualify for medicare, you need to be 65 years of age. However, in some cases, there are certain diseases and disabilities which will actually allow for Medicare coverage at an earlier age. For a full list of these, it’s best to consult the Medicare website or check with a doctor.

There are a large number of Medicare options in various states and locations. It can be difficult to determine exactly which Medicare plan a person wants to use. Thankfully, there are handy tools online to assist in determining the right Medicare option for each person. This can be personalized based on the type of medication a person already needs, and where they receive treatment.

Questions and Answers:

Medicare is still a complicated subject, and there may be some confusion as to what is actually included in being a part of it. These common questions will hopefully give you some quick answers.

Q: Do I need to Sign Up for All Parts of Medicare?

A: No. While Parts A and B of Medicare are the original coverage, signing up for Part C and Part D is optional and up to the discretion of each person.

Q: How do I get Part C or Part D of Medicare?

A: These parts of medicare are only available through private health plans. Most health insurance providers have some sort of Medicare options available.

Q: Why Buy Private Health Plans?

A: Medicare is solid, but it does not cover everything health related. Things like dental and vision are not covered by traditional medicare. There will often be a deductible due as well. Private plans can cover these extra costs.

Q: Are Drugs Covered?

A: If you are lucky enough to have Part D of Medicare, then many prescription drugs will be covered. However, it’s good to know that sometimes they will not.

Q: When Can I Enroll In Medicare?  

A: There is an initial enrollment period when it comes to Medicare. It starts just a few months before a person turns 65. After that, enrollment will be annually in the fall until December 7. There are also special conditions like moving across state lines that can allow for differing enrollment periods.

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