Almost every day, I talk with people aging into Medicare. Almost everyone is confused. One reason is that there at least two names for exactly the same Medicare feature. For example:
- A Medicare supplement is the same thing as a Medigap policy
- Medicare Part A is inpatient hospital and nursing home insurance
- Medicare Part B is medical insurance (doctor, lab, x-ray, ER, etc.)
- Medicare Part C is also known as a Medicare Advantage Plan or MA or MAPD(includes a PDP)
- Medicare Part D is a prescription plan also known as a PDP
- A Gap in prescription coverage is also known as the “Donut Hole”
- A low income subsidy (LIS) to help pay for prescriptions is also known as “Extra help”
There are 4 parts to Medicare: Parts A.B,C, and D but confusingly enough when shopping for a Medicare Supplement policy, you have eleven plans to choose from: Medigap Plans A, B, C, D, F, high deductible F, G, K, L, M, and N.
The Government branch – U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (known as CMS) tries to be helpful. They have a wonderful publication Medicare & You that is only 140 pages long. It has been my experience that you only get this resource after you have Medicare and even then, very few people will read or understand it. That is where I come in! I know and understand this information! However, I do use a flow chart found on page 14, to show my prospective clients. I find this visual to be very informative. You may find this Medicare Chart on a separate page on my website.
As always, please feel free to contact me with any questions. My knowledge is absolutely free to you with no obligation.