Original Medicare or Medicare Advantage
If you are new to Medicare, choosing between an original or advantage plan will likely be the first decision you need to make.
Original Medicare is separated into two parts:
- Medicare Part A: Coverage for hospital costs, such as hospital stays
- Medicare Part B: Coverage for medical costs, such as doctor visits and preventive care
Medicare Advantage includes coverage for both Part A and Part B but is delivered through private insurance companies. Medicare Advantage plans often have prescription drug coverage included in the plan as well, while Original Medicare recipients will need to purchase a separate policy to receive prescription drug coverage.
- Medicare Part D: Medicare Part D is prescription drug coverage that can be purchased in conjunction with Original Medicare benefits.
Original Medicare can be used with any doctor or hospital that accepts Medicare, anywhere in the U.S. If you opt to enroll in Medicare Advantage, you will have access to a network of health care providers that are covered under your plan. If you choose to receive care from providers outside of this network, those services may come at a higher cost.
Medicare Supplement Insurance
If you are an Original Medicare recipient, the out-of-pocket costs you incur for healthcare services may be excessive. Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap) is a coverage option that exists to help pay excess costs, like copayments, deductibles, and coinsurance.
There are ten Medigap plans currently available. Each one offers different benefits. Therefore you should consult an expert to help you understand which plan is most suitable for your long term needs.