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Medicare Parts A and B

Medicare Parts A and B are part of the federal government's standard health plan for people age 65 or over, people under 65 with certain disabilities and people of any age with End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) (permanent kidney failure requiring dialysis or a kidney transplant).

Medicare works the same way throughout the U.S. with any provider that accepts Medicare patients. Parts A and B each help to pay for several types of medical costs, but they don't cover everything.

First, you will learn "the basics" about what Medicare is and how the various parts of Medicare work. Next, you'll learn what Medicare supplement insurance is, and how it may fit with your lifestyle. With this important information, you'll be ready to make confident decisions about your Medicare coverage.

To get an idea of the coverage provided by Medicare Parts A and B, take a look at the information below.

Medicare Part A

Medicare Part A: Hospital Coverage

  • Inpatient hospital stays and skilled nursing facility stays
  • Hospice care and respite care
  • Home health care and religious nonmedical health care institution
Medicare Part B

Medicare Part B: Medical Coverage

  • Doctor visits
  • Outpatient care, such as lab tests
  • Services not covered by Part A, such as physical therapy
  • Some home health care services, in some cases
  • Some preventive services
  • Durable medical equipment

Medicare Parts A and B Pay:

  • Most fees for covered stays in the hospital except the Part A deductible and coinsurance amounts
  • About 80% of Part B-covered doctor and outpatient medical expenses (after the annual deductible is met)

You Pay:

  • The Part A premium if required, deductible and coinsurance amounts that apply
  • Usually a Part B monthly premium
  • The remaining Part B out-of-pocket expenses
  • Part B annual deductible

Glossary of Terms

Deductible: A kind of cost sharing where you have to pay a pre-set, fixed amount before Medicare begins to pay for Medicare approved expenses.

Premium: A fixed amount you have to pay for an insurance plan; usually as a monthly payment.

View All Terms

The Basics of Medicare Insurance Explained

Watch the video below to learn more about Medicare and Medicare-related health insurance plans.