Part A: Hospital Insurance is automatically available to those qualified at no premium. Part A helps cover inpatient hospital and skilled nursing home costs, hospice care and limited home health benefits. There is a large deductible for hospital stays. In 2010, the deductible = $1068 for days 1 - 60 and more for additional days.
Part B: Medical Insurance is a voluntary program that requires a monthly premium. In 2010, this monthly premium was approximately $110. Most Part B recipients have this premium automatically deducted from their monthly social security checks. Part B members pay 20% copay for each doctor visit and medical coverage.
Part D: Prescription Drug Plans offered by private insurance companies that contract with the Federal government to provide these optional plans to medicare recipients for a monthly premium plus copays for each drug's monthly prescription. There is also a large coverage gap once Total Drug Costs reach $2830. This "donut hole" upsets many Medicare members who use large amounts of prescription drugs. They reach the donut hole quickly, especially if they use Brand and Specialty drugs. Then they are stuck paying "out of pocket" until they reach $4850 "out of pocket." Then the price goes down. The good news is, with the new healthcare policy, the donut hole will be closed by 2020.
Part C: Medicare Advantage (MA) Plans are plans offered by private insurance companies that combine hospital and outpatient services into one package for those who are enrolled in both part A and B (MA) and can also include prescription drug coverage (MAPD). Many of these plans have $0 Premiums for both the MA and PD portions of the plan. Many medicare members LOVE MA and MAPD plans because their costs are much lower. $0 Premiums. Lower copays for their doctor visits, hospital stays and prescription drugs. Many people wonder how private Healthcare providers can provide all of these benefits at $0 premiums and lower costs.
Supplemental Plans: Offered by private insurance companies to supplement government offered Part A + B Medicare. They are not compatible with MA plans. They are sold with monthly premiums.