You may be aware of what Medicare generally is – it’s a free insurance policy that covers only a specific group of individuals. This includes older people over the age of 65, younger individuals who suffer from specific disabilities, and those diagnosed with End-Stage Renal Disease.
However, there are Medicare plans that you can get if you can afford to pay a certain premium amount each month. In this article, we’ll take a more in-depth look at what Medicare covers, who is eligible for it, and how you can choose the best plan based on Medicare ratings. So, let’s get started right away.
How To Choose The Right Plan
If you’re eligible to opt for the free Medicare plan (Part A), then that’s an excellent choice to go for. However, if you cannot avail of the free plan, you can get the same plan by paying a premium each month.
This is usually around $499 per month. However, this is prone to change because if you have paid Medicare taxes for 30-39 quarters, you’ll be eligible to opt for this plan and pay a monthly premium of only $274.
When choosing between the different Medicare plans available to you, you can refer to the “star ratings” released by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) each year in October.
Based on this, you’ll be able to get information on the experience of other Medicare beneficiaries, a comparison of the plans, and a detailed list of all the Medicare services, along with their overall costs.
Using this information, you’ll be able to go for a plan which covers your needs and fits your budget.
Who Can Avail The Free Plan?
The Medicare free insurance plan is available to senior citizens who are 65 and above, only if you or your spouse has worked and paid Medicare taxes for at least 10 years. You are also eligible to get the free plan if you are 65 and above and currently receive retirement benefits from Social Security or the Railroad Retirement Board.
In addition to this, young individuals who suffer from Renal Disease can also be eligible for this plan. This free Medicare plan is also referred to as Part A of the Medicare plan.
Part B of the Medicare insurance plan is a paid plan, which can be availed for a certain premium each month by anybody belonging to any age.
What Does It Cover?
Part A and Part B of the Medicare insurance plan cover different needs for the people who opt to go for either one of the plans. Here’s an overview of what each plan consists of and what benefits you can avail yourself from both:
Medicare Part A – This insurance plan covers in-patient care in a hospital. It also covers a limited period of care given at a skilled nursing facility – this usually follows when a patient has spent a period of time in the hospital. Apart from this, this insurance plan pays for a certain amount of home health care and hospice care. In general, this insurance plan is known as hospital insurance as most of what it covers deals with in-patient hospital care.
Medicare Part B – Medicare Part B is known as medical insurance. It covers the payment of doctors, health care providers, home health care, outpatient care, medical equipment, and certain preventive services.
Though some people can avail of Part A for free (if they’re eligible), everyone who wants to opt for Part B of the Medicare plan has to pay the total amount for it. In 2022, the premium amount for Medicare Part B is $170.10. Additionally, you may have to pay an extra sum (along with the $170.10) if your adjusted gross income on your IRS tax return from 2 years ago is above a certain amount.