Paying For Healthcare

Medicare Parts A, B, and D

Medicare is a federally-funded health insurance program that typically serves as the primary insurance for people over age 65, as well as people with certain disabilities or health conditions. In general, Medicare covers 80% of outpatient services (medical services provided in the community) and all hospitalizations (minus a deductible).

Medicare has three parts, Part A, B and D.

Part A covers inpatient hospital care, skilled nursing facility care, home health care and hospice care. Most people do not have to pay a monthly premium for Part A because either they or their spouse paid Medicare taxes while they were working. There are deductibles and co-payments which a patient is responsible for paying during each benefit period. A benefit period begins when you are admitted to the hospital or skilled nursing facility and ends when you are discharged, and 60 consecutive days have passed.

Learn more on Medicare Part A

Part B covers medical care and services provided by physicians, durable medical equipment and a variety of outpatient care services. Each year, the beneficiary must pay the first $100 in approved medical charges before Part B starts to pay.

Learn more on Medicare Part B

Learn more on Medicare Part C

Frequently Asked Questions:

Who is eligible for Medicare benefits?
Persons 65 or older who are entitled to Social Security or Railroad Retirement benefits; persons under 65 who have been entitled to Security Disability Insurance benefits or Railroad Retirement Disability benefits for 24 months; and persons of any age who have end-stage renal disease.

Is there any limit on income and resources?
No, there is no limit on income and resources.

Is US citizenship required?
All applicants for Medicare must be either US citizens or legally present aliens who have had continuous residence in the United States for at least 5 years.

Where can I apply for Medicare?
For additional information or to apply for Medicare, contact the Social Security Administration at 1-800-772-1213, or online at or

What documentation is required for the interview?
Proof of age, such as a birth certificate, baptismal certificate, etc. Proof of citizenship or lawful entry into the U.S. and Social Security number.

Part D

In December 2003, President Bush signed H.R. 1, the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003.This bill established a new Medicare prescription drug benefit that went to effect in 2006. Medicare beneficiaries aged 65 and over, or those who are disabled, must enroll in a prescription drug plan offered by private insurance companies.

Learn more on Medicare Part D