Medicare is a discussion that often comes with many misinformation being shared and past on.  One issue that is often misunderstood is how much money Medicare will cost and exactly what is included within the insurance plan.  Medicare can be broken down into two main parts coverage types; Medicare Part A and B with supplemental added on or Medicare Advantage.

Medicare Part A and B is offered to individuals sixty-five and older that meet the requirements associated with the government offered health insurance plan.  It is also available to people you qualify that under sixty-five.  The eligibility requirements associated with Medicare are quite in depth themselves so much that there are internet sites devoted to that subject entirely.

Part A of Medicare is a completely free insurance plan.  Part A offers recipients coverage for hospital visits; in-patient hospital services, skilled nursing homes if required after a hospital stay, hospice and blood transfusions after the first three pints.  However Part B is requires a monthly premium to be paid out of pocket from the individual.  Coverage from Part B offers coverage for miscellaneous medical coverage such as; medical expenses, laboratory services, outpatient service and preventative health exams.

With Medicare Part A and B recipients are able to purchase supplemental insurance that helps fill in the gaps of what is not covered.  Medicare supplemental insurance plans A, B, C, D, F, G, K, L, M and N offer benefits ranging from hospitalization co-pays to deductibles.  All services not covered by Medicare all the recipients’ responsibility unless a Medigap plan has been purchased through an independent insurance company.  Medigap is the term used for the insurance that is purchase to cover the gaps left by Medicare.

For many this territory is uncharted and confusing.  Terms are used interchangeably which can only add to the confusion.  It is best to get a handle on the terms and there meanings.  For instance a premium is the amount that an individual pays for their coverage.  It will be the amount paid for Medicare Part B plus the additional for the Medigap supplemental insurance policies.  Depending on the coverage that is chosen the premium will vary for each individual.  Deductibles are the amount that is paid out of an individual’s pocket before any covered medical expenses are paid for by Medicare. Co-pays, copayments, are a fixed dollar amount that is paid for medical visits. Finally coinsurance which is the amount that is required to be paid by an individual after Medicare has paid their agreed upon portion.

Medicare Advantage Plans are offered to individuals that are eligible and have Medicare Plan A and B and that live in an area that offers the advantage plan.  When enrolled in Medicare Advantage Plan recipients are still a part of the government supplied Medicare insurance  however are not eligible to purchase extra supplemental insurance such as the Medigap policies talked about earlier.  Medicare Advantage is in the simplest term a program in which Medicare offers contracts to certain area hospitals and doctors for approved amounts.  In turn individuals enrolled in this insurance plan must attend to the facilities of these medical professionals.

Medicare Advantage plan does offer greater coverage for individuals than original Medicare however not available in all areas and not right for everyone.  Individual participants are limited in their choice of doctors and hospitals.  If it is imperative that certain doctors and hospitals are seen than it is up to the individual to make sure they accept Medicare Advantage before signing up for the plan.

It is important for individuals to seek out the Medicare supplements or advantage plans that are best for their situations.  No one can predict their medical future however, using the past as a basis will help guide individuals to the right choice.  Medicare supplemental insurance is all set in stone by the federal government the cost to individuals however is not.  All supplemental policies are sold through private insurance companies.  Companies such as Senior Health Direct offer services in which clients can review different plan options available in the area and the premiums charged by multiple insurance companies.  This is helpful in the search to find the right coverage at the right price without having to meet with multiple private insurance companies.