Basics of Medicare by PykeLawGA

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									                                           Basics of Medicare

Medicare, health insurance for elderly and disabled Americans, is a large system that can seem
confusing. Here are some basics to help you understand all types of Medicare.

Eligibility

You may apply for Medicare at age 65. You are required to apply at that time unless you still have
health insurance through an employer. You may be eligible for Medicare before age 65 if you are
receiving disability benefits.

Hospital Care

Medicare Part A provides assistance with hospital care coverage. This includes short term hospital visits,
long term care in nursing homes, some at-home services, and hospice care. If you have worked and
contributed to Medicare through taxes, then you are eligible for premium-free Medicare Part A. If you
have not contributed enough, you will have to pay a monthly premium for Part A.

Doctor Care

Medicare Part B is for physician services. This includes both preventative and corrective care. With Part
B, you must pay a monthly premium, which is just under 100 dollars. For higher income individuals the
premium is elevated and may range from 150 to 350 dollars.

Medicare Advantage

Medicare Advantage, also called Medicare Part C can be purchased through a Medicare approved
private insurance company. This type of Medicare provides you with more flexibility. Your insurance will
include both hospital and doctor care. You must pay for Medicare Part B and you will also pay an
additional premium for Part C. Your plan may include prescription drug coverage.

Prescription Coverage

Medicare Part D is prescription drug coverage. You can either sign up for a Part C plan that includes Part
D, or you can purchase it from a private insurance company. Prescription drug coverage options differ in
each state and with each provider. If you use a great deal of prescription drugs, you may wish to sign up
for a plan with a higher premium and lower deductibles.

Additional Coverage

Beyond Medicare there is also Medigap Insurance. If you need assistance paying deductibles, co pays,
coinsurance, or some uncovered medical expenses this private insurance is there to help. If however,
you have Part C, Medigap does not cover extra co pays and deductibles from that plan.

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