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What Is Medicare? The Basics You Need to Know

Medicare is the federal health insurance program for older Americans (65 or over), or younger Americans with qualifying disabilities or conditions. It is broken down into four basic parts: A, B, C and D.

 

Medicare A

What Is Medicare Part A?

Part A is the hospital insurance part of Medicare. It typically covers things like medically necessary:

Inpatient care at a hospital or skilled nursing facility
(not long term)

HOSPICE CARE

Home health care or health services (but not custodial care, that is, help with daily activities like dressing, bathing or eating)

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Medicare B

What Is Medicare Part B?

Part B is the medical insurance part of Medicare. It typically covers things like medically necessary:

Doctor visits & outpatient services

Lab work & durable medical equipment

Home health services

Cancer therapy & kidney DIALYSIS

Learn More

Medicare B

Medicare C

What Is Medicare Part C?

Part C Medicare Advantage plans are an alternative you can choose for your Medicare coverage. Typically they:

Are offered and administered by Medicare-approved insurance carriers

Cover everything Medicare Parts A and B cover

Often includes Part D Prescription Drug Coverage

May offer other benefits not covered by Parts A and B

Learn More

Medicare C

Medicare D

What Is Medicare Part D?

Part D is Medicare prescription drug coverage. Original Medicare (Parts A and B) only cover prescription drugs in certain situations, like when you are hospital inpatient. So, to cover prescription drugs, you need to select a Medicare Part D plan. Medicare Part D plans:

Are offered through Medicare-approved private insurance companies

Help cover the cost of prescription drugs

Vary in what drugs are covered and at what level of coverage

Vary in monthly costs and out-of-pocket expenses

Medicare D

 

What Medicare Coverage Do I Choose?

When choosing how to receive your Medicare benefits, you have two basic choices.

 

Medicare Supplement


Choice 1: Parts A and B (Original Medicare) + Part D + an optional Medicare Supplement plan, which is designed to cover many of the areas Original Medicare doesn’t cover.

OR

 

Medicare Advantage


Choice 2: Part C (Medicare Advantage plan), which wraps up coverage equal to Parts A and B, often includes Part D, and may include other benefits, such as dental or vision coverage.1

The two choices (Original Medicare/Part D/Medicare Supplement versus Medicare Advantage) are very different. Learn more or find which option might be best for you by speaking with a Licensed Sales Agent.

1 This information is not a complete description of benefits. Contact the plan for more information. Limitations, copayments, and restrictions may apply. Benefits, premiums and/or co-payments/co-insurance may change on January 1 of each year.

1 You must continue to pay your Medicare Part B premium.



Plans are insured through UnitedHealthcare Insurance Company or one of its affiliated companies, a Medicare Advantage organization with a Medicare contract. Enrollment in the plan depends on the plan’s contract renewal with Medicare.



Last Updated: 8.24.2018 12:01AM ET Y0066_171214_055626
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