There are 2 ways to receive Medicare coverage benefits:
- Original Medicare (including Part A & Part B) or
- Medicare Advantage Plan (Part C)
Original Medicare is coverage managed by the federal government. Part A covers inpatient hospital stays, care in a skilled nursing facility, hospice care, and some home health care. Part B covers certain doctors’ services, outpatient care, medical supplies, and preventive services.
Medicare Advantage Plans, sometimes called “Part C” or “MA Plans,” are offered by private companies approved by Medicare. If you enroll in a Medicare Advantage Plan, you will receive your Part A (Hospital Insurance) and Part B (Medical Insurance) coverage from the Medicare Advantage Plan and not from Original Medicare.
Additional coverage, beyond the benefits offered by Parts A & B, can be purchased through Medicare Supplemental Insurance (Medigap).
Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap) policies, are sold by private companies approved by Medicare, that can help pay for health care costs that Original Medicare doesn’t cover, like copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles. A Medigap policy is different from a Medicare Advantage plan. Medicare Advantage plans are ways to receive Medicare benefits from private companies, while a Medigap policy supplements your Original Medicare benefits. With a Medigap policy, Medicare pays its share of covered health care costs first, then the Medigap plan pays its share.