Most people know that Medicare provides low-cost medical coverage for citizens that are over 65. However, what most people don’t know is precisely how Medicare coverage works. Medicare’s services are divided into four parts, each providing different benefits. They are:
This part will cover any hospital stays you may require due to surgical procedures or to treat your injury or illness. Inpatient hospital care includes semi-private rooms, meals, general nursing, drugs and any other services your doctor orders.
There are some restrictions on length of hospital stay, and if you end up staying in the hospital for longer than 60 days, you have to pay a fee. The possibility of staying in for more than 90 days also exists. These extra days are known as lifetime reserve days and you can only use them once.
Part B includes medical appointments, outpatient care, medical supplies and preventive services. One of the main advantages of Part B is that it also covers any mental health related issues, including therapy and inpatient stays.
Part B, unlike part A, requires you to pay a deductible of 20% for your doctor’s, hospital, or health care services. You also need to make a monthly payment.
In a nutshell, Part D covers prescription drugs, including generic and brand-name medication. For this drug plan, you also need to pay a monthly fee; and just like part B, you can decide not to sign up for it. However, if you don’t sign up the moment you become eligible, you may have to pay the penalty for delayed enrollment.
This section can be tricky, as it is not another benefit per se. Instead, this part allows private health insurance companies to provide Medicare benefits. Part C is also known as Medicare Advantage, a coverage plan that incorporates both parts A and B, and Part D.
Making the best decision
You can choose which parts to include in your coverage, and the selection will depend on your circumstances and health condition. Talking to a doctor could get you assurance on which services and supplies you may need in the future according to your present-day health issues. A lawyer could also assess you on your application. You don’t have to make these decisions alone.