What is Original Medicare?
Medicare Parts A and B are referred to as “Original Medicare” and is the federal health insurance program that includes a defined set of benefits and services. Husker Insurance is here to help you navigate your options.
What does it cover?
Part A: Hospital
Medicare Part A is hospital insurance and helps cover the cost if you are staying in a hospital, if you are receiving care in a skilled nursing facility, or hospice care and some home health care.
Part B: Medical
Medicare Part B is Medical insurance and helps cover the cost for certain doctor services, outpatient care, durable medical equipment, and other medical services. If you enroll in a Medicare Advantage Plan you must continue to pay your Part B premium.
Part C: Medicare Advantage
Part C also known as Medicare Advantage includes Part A, Part B and sometimes Part D policies. It is an all in one plan offered by a private company that contracts with Medicare. Medicare Advantage Plans typically include:
- Health Maintenance Organizations
- Preferred Provider Organizations
- Private Fee-for-Service Plans
- Special Needs Plans
- Medicare Medical Savings Account Plans
Part D: Prescriptions
Medicare Part D is prescription drug coverage and helps cover the cost of many outpatient prescription drugs. If you enroll in a Medicare Advantage Plan this drug coverage is usually included into the plan, otherwise, it is offered through insurance companies as a separate plan.
To be eligible for Medicare you must be a United States citizen or permanent legal resident who has resided in the United States for five continuous years and is:
- Age 65 or older and are US citizens or have been permanent legal residents for five continuous years, and they or their spouse (or qualified ex-spouse) have paid Medicare taxes for at least 10 years.
- Under age 65 permanently disabled and have received either Social Security disability benefits or Railroad Retirement Board disability benefits for at least two years.
- People diagnosed with an end-stage renal disease (ESRD); permanent kidney failure requiring dialysis or a transplant.
When am I eligible?
- For most, eligibility starts the month in which you turn 65.
- Contact Social Security within 90 days of your 65th birthday.
- Retiring and leaving full-time employment and losing employer group coverage.
- If you plan to continue to work beyond 65, you may want to consider delaying your Part B of Medicare until you are ready to retire. As long as you have credible coverage on an individual plan or on your spouse’s plan, you can delay Part B.
- Spouse is retiring from full-time employment and losing employer group coverage.
- Contact Social Security within 90 days of your retirement date.
What are my options?
Original Medicare won’t cover all of your health care cost. You may want a plan in place to help pay your out-of-pocket cost.
Medicare Advantage Plans: More total coverage than original Medicare, with predictable costs, allowing you to pay for what you use. Medicare Advantage plans take the place of original Medicare and usually include additional benefits such as wellness programs, and hearing and vision discounts. You must have Parts A and B to enroll in a Medicare Advantage Plan.
Medicare Supplement Plans: Also known as Medigap plans offer traditional coverage that helps cover the out-of-pocket gaps in Original Medicare. You must have Parts A and B to enroll in a Medicare Supplement Plan.
Medicare Prescription Drug Plans: Also knows as Part D plans allow for prescription drug coverage. You can get Part D coverage from your Medicare Advantage plan, you can pair it with a Medicare Supplement plan allowing for complete coverage.
A sample Medicare card.
There are separate lines for basic Part A and Part B supplementary medical coverage, each with its own date.
There are no lines for Part C or Part D, for which additional supplemental policies are issued with a separate card.