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What is Medicare?

Medicare is a federally insured health insurance program for individuals turning 65, or have been disabled for 24 months regardless of their age due to a qualifying ailment. There are four separate plans for Original Medicare including parts A, B, C and D. Some of the parts can work together and some of them cannot. It’s important that you understand the options available to you before you sign up for any plans/parts.


Part A: This includes hospital coverage which is usually offered at no additional cost to individuals who qualify with at least forty calendar quarters or ten years of employment at any job where Social Security taxes were paid to the United States. Also if you were a federal employee after December 31, 1983 or a state or local employee beyond May 31, 1985 you are eligible for Part A for free. Otherwise, the cost of Part A would be over $400 per month and it covers the majority of medically necessities including hospital, hospice care, home health and skilled nursing facility. It is not full coverage and it will have reoccurring deductibles as well as additional out of pocket expenses.

Part B: This plan includes doctors and outpatient services which are optional coverage’s which will require you to pay a monthly premium that is based on the previous two years of annual income. Part B will cover most doctors’ services including hospital out-patient services, preventive care, lab tests, x-rays, most ambulance charges, durable medical equipment and others. You will still have a deductible that needs to be met along with other out of pocket expenses.

Part C: Also known as Medicare Advantage, allows private health insurance companies to provide one of the benefits. These are known as HMOs, PPOs, PFFS and SNP. This allows you to get your Medicare coverage through a Medicare Advantage plan rather than Original Medicare. However, you cannot do both. Medicare Advantage plans have to offer the same benefits as Original Medicare Parts A as well as B but are allowed to do so at different costs, restrictions and more. You are allowed to pay a monthly premium as well as a premium for Part B.

Part D: Also known as the Prescription Drug Plan (PDP) provides Medicare recipients with coverage for prescription drugs. It is only provided through private insurance companies who have legal agreements with the government. Plan D is never provided directly from the government. You must choose coverage from Part D that will work with your Medicare health benefits and if you have Original Medicare you can choose a stand-alone Part D plan.

USA Medicare Services is available to answer any of your questions and guide you through the process of choosing the right coverage for you.

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National Senior Services is not connected with or endorsed by the US government or the federal Medicare program; Medicare has neither reviewed nor endorsed this information. We are a licensed and approved Medicare Service Provider.

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