A Comprehensive Overview of What Medicare Covers for Seniors Over 65
Medicare is an important part of many seniors’ retirement plans. But what exactly does it cover? Here, we’ll take a look at what Medicare covers and how it can help seniors over 65.
What Does Medicare Cover?
Medicare Part A covers hospital stays, hospice care, and some home health services. Part B covers preventive care such as doctor visits, lab tests, and X-rays. It also pays for some medical equipment and supplies used in the home. Part C combines Parts A and B, while Part D covers prescription drugs. There are also additional coverage options available through private insurance companies that offer benefits that are not covered by original Medicare.
How Much Does it Cost?
Original Medicare (Parts A and B) does not have monthly premiums or yearly deductibles associated with it—but there may be other costs you need to consider when determining if you can afford the coverage. For example, you may need to pay copayments for certain services or coinsurance for hospital stays. You will also be responsible for any out-of-pocket costs that exceed the annual maximum out-of-pocket limit set by Medicare each year. Additionally, if you choose to enroll in a Part C or Part D plan, those plans will come with premiums and other out-of-pocket costs that you’ll need to consider when calculating your total cost of coverage.
Who Can Enroll?
Anyone who is over 65 years old is eligible to enroll in Original Medicare (Parts A and B). However, if you are not already collecting Social Security benefits at age 65 you must actively sign up for the program within three months of your 65th birthday in order to avoid higher monthly premiums once enrolled. Additionally, people who are under the age of 65 may still qualify for Original Medicare if they have certain disabilities or end stage renal disease (ESRD).
The bottom line is that Original Medicare provides comprehensive healthcare coverage for seniors over 65—and potentially those under 65 with certain disabilities or ESRD—at no monthly premium cost if they sign up within three months of turning 65 years old. The program has copayments and coinsurance associated with it but these amounts are significantly lower than those found in most private health insurance plans. Additionally, there are additional coverage options available through private insurance companies which can provide extra protection against unexpected healthcare expenses not covered by original Medicare alone. So make sure to explore all your options before deciding on a plan!