Mary Alexander: Hi! I'm Mary Alexander from Home Instead Senior Care and today I'm talking about Medicare. Medicare is health insurance for people who are age 65 or older or are younger than 65 with certain disabilities or who have end-stage renal failure. Generally speaking and taking into consideration some other qualification if you meet one of these three eligibility requirements, you can enroll for Medicare coverage. Medicare is divided into four parts; Part A-Medicare provided hospital insurance. Part B-Medicare provided medical insurance. Part C-Medicare Advantage Programs offered by private insurance companies approved by Medicare that offer the same services covered under Parts A and B and Part D-Prescription drug coverage offered by Medicare approved private companies. In general, those covered by Medicare Part A and B, also called original Medicare as well as those covered by a Medicare advantage program, get services including inpatient hospital, rehabilitation and skilled nursing facility care, hospice care, some home healthcare and preventative services and testing. Many with Medicare advantage programs also get prescription drug coverage and other services, such as vision, hearing, and dental programs for additional costs. Others covered under Medicare A and B can also purchase prescription drug coverage under Part D. Medicare does not cover everything, and there are often co-pays and deductibles. As such many people opt to purchase Medigap Insurance to help cover some of the expenses. A Medigap policy is private health insurance that supplements those who have Medicare Parts A and B. This policy is a separate cost that you must pay. Starting out your research into the Medicare system can seem daunting, but there are lots of resources out there to help. Two good places to look are benefitschekcup.
org and medicarerights.
org, but your best bet is medicare.
gov, the official US government site for Medicare. There you will find many tools to help you discover your eligibility, determine the best plan for you, and enroll for services. You can also call 1-800-Medicare. It's also important not to delay your investigation of Medicare, because if you miss your initial enrollment period there may be delays or additional costs for coverage.