The A, B, C, Ds of Medicare

Here’s a quick a look at the different parts of Medicare and what each offers.

Part A, Hospital Coverage: Anyone aged 65 or older is eligible for Medicare. Most people will qualify for Part A coverage without having to pay any premium.

Part A covers:

  • Medically necessary care requiring an overnight hospital stay
  • Follow-up nursing care after a hospital stay
  • Hospice care
  • Some home health care

Part B, Doctor Coverage: You’ll have to actively enroll in Part B and pay a monthly premium to receive coverage for doctors’ services. If you do not enroll when you first become eligible, you may pay a penalty in order to get this coverage at a later point.

Part B covers medically necessary services that don’t require an overnight hospital stay, such as:

  • Doctor’s office visits
  • Hospital or clinical care
  • Lab tests
  • Some screenings

Part C, Medicare Advantage Plans: Medicare Advantage plans provide all of the benefits of Original Medicare (Parts A and B) plus additional benefits, which may include eyeglasses, full hospitalization coverage, chiropractic care, hearing and dental services and prescription drug coverage — often for no additional plan premium.

Part D, Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage: Prescription drug coverage is not included in Original Medicare; therefore, you must enroll separately in Part D to receive drug coverage, unless it’s already part of your Medicare Advantage plan.

To learn more about Medicare, visit medicare.gov.