Medicare Basics

Medicare, the federal health insurance program for seniors and people with disabilities, provides health care coverage for millions of Americans. To be eligible, you must typically be 65 years old or older. Though, certain people with disabilities also qualify. To learn the basics of Medicare and what it offers, continue reading.

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What Is Medicare?

Medicare is a public health insurance program administered by the Social Security Administration. Part of the Social Security fund is used to pay for health care benefits that millions of Americans have access to. The program is divided into four parts, each providing different benefits to beneficiaries. Depending on how you arrange your benefits, you may need to manage each part separately. 

The parts of Medicare are:

  • Part A – hospital insurance; Part A covers:
    • Inpatient coverage
    • Hospital stays
    • Home health care
    • Skilled nursing facility care
    • Hospice care
    • Nursing home care
  • Part B – medical insurance; Part B covers:
    • Outpatient care
    • Doctor visits
    • Ambulance services
    • Mental health services
    • Medically necessary services
    • Preventive services
    • Durable medical equipment
  • Part C – Medicare Advantage; Part C covers:
    • The same benefits as Part A and B
    • May also include coverage for:
      • Prescription drugs
      • Dental, hearing, and vision
      • Wellness programs
      • Fitness memberships
      • And more
  • Part D – drug coverage; Part D covers:
    • At least two drugs from each class
    • All Part D plans must cover:
      • Antipsychotics
      • Anticonvulsants
      • Anticancer
      • Antidepressants
      • Immunosuppressants
      • HIV/AIDs drugs

Who Qualifies For Medicare?

You generally need to be at least 65 years old to qualify for Medicare. If you are below age 65, you can also become eligible after being diagnosed with a disability and collecting Social Security Disability benefits for at least 24 months. For example, people with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis are eligible for Medicare benefits soon after their diagnosis. 

How Much Does Medicare Cost?

While premium-free Part A benefits are available, only people who have paid 40 quarters worth of Medicare taxes are eligible for this. If you haven’t paid enough in taxes, you pay $499 in premiums or as low as $274, depending on how much you’ve paid in taxes. The Part B premium is $170.10 for most people. We will discuss IRRMA during the initial review  and how that can impact your part B and D premium.

Reach Out To Us Today To Learn More

Are you interested in signing up for Medicare benefits? Then it’s time to give Duncan Market Insurance a call.