The Different Parts of Medicare
There are four parts of Medicare. Part A (hospital insurance), Part B (outpatient), Part C (Medicare Advantage), and Part D (drug coverage).
There is also Medigap (Medicare Supplement), which can help fill in the gaps in original Medicare.
Of these, Parts A and B are Original Medicare and are the base-line coverage everyone who qualifies for Medicare qualifies for, and Part C, D, and Medigap are optional types of Medicare insurance that offer choice and often offer better cost sharing.
TIP: In general, people typically do one of the following when it comes to Medicare: Hold only Part A and B, add Medigap and/or Part D to their Part A and B plan, or obtain a Part C Medicare Advantage policy with a Part D drug policy, or obtain an Advantage plan and add Part D on. There are lots of ways to mix and match Medicare, but it all starts with Original Medicare Part A and B.
Original Medicare Part A and B
Original Medicare covers Part A and Part B.
- Part A is inpatient/hospital coverage.
- Part B is outpatient/medical coverage.
A is free, while Part B has a premium based on income.
Every citizen qualifies for Original Medicare when they turn 65 or meet other criteria.
Original Medicare covers all the basics, but it doesn’t fully cover cost sharing or drug costs. Often people will pick Medigap, Part C, or Part D plans to cover the extra costs in exchange for additional premiums.
Part C, Medicare Advantage
Part C plans are comprehensive Medicare plans that can cover everything from original Medicare covers and can cover things Original medicare doesn’t like drug coverage and the part A and B deductibles.
There are many different plan C options.
When you get plan C, you won’t need to choose other Medicare Parts, your insurer takes over your A and B plans. Part is an alternative to Part D and Medigap.
Part D, Drug Coverage
Part D plans are drug plans that cover additional cost sharing when it comes to drugs.
Medigap, also called Medicare Supplement, fill in the gaps in original Medicare to cover things like the part A and B deductibles.