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Medicare, Medigap, & Medicaid: What You Need To Know

Medicare is a way for eligible seniors to afford the healthcare services they need, and many citizens in the United States count on it for care.  But Medicare is a complex subject, that comes with many different types of plans and assistance options. Here we will explore some of those options, and what they mean.  

What Is Medicare?

Medicare is a federal health insurance program offered to U.S. citizens who are 65 and older.  Younger people with disabilities, as well as  as well as some younger people with disabilities who are on Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI).  People with renal disease who require dialysis are also eligible.  Medicare comes in different parts: Part A, B, and D, that cover different healthcare services.  

What Is Medicaid?

Medicaid is a program provided by the federal government for those who qualify due to disability or low income.  It covers some or all of the costs of Medicare.  Medicaid can help cover services that Medicare doesn’t cover.  If you find yourself struggling to afford the cost of your healthcare, you may qualify for these federal and state subsidies.  It’s possible to qualify for both Medicare and Medicaid.  If you qualify for both Medicare and Medicaid, it’s referred to as having “Dual Eligibility”.   People who have both Medicare and full Medicaid will likely have all of their healthcare costs covered.  

What Is Medigap?

Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap) is insurance that helps to fill the “gaps” in regular Medicare.  It’s sold by private insurance companies.  While Medicare pays for many healthcare needs, supplies, and services, not everything is covered.  However, Medigap is not to be confused with Medicaid.  When using regular Medicare, Medicare will cover a pre-approved amount of certain healthcare costs.  In the event you need further assistance, Medigap will step in to help cover the rest of your out-of-pocket expenses where it applies.  This may not mean everything will be resolved with no cost to you, but it may allow you to greatly reduce the amount you owe for your coverage needs.  

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Disclaimers: Outside of the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period, members can enroll in a plan only if they meet certain criteria. A licensed insurance agent can help you determine whether you are eligible. Plan availability varies by region and state. Callers will be directed to a licensed insurance agent with a third-party partner of MedicareGap.org who can provide more information about Medicare Advantage plans offered by one or several Medicare-contracted carrier(s). Enrollment in any plan depends on contract renewal. Medicare has neither reviewed nor endorsed the information contained in this advertisement. Not connected with, or endorsed by, the U.S. government or the federal Medicare program. This information is not a complete description of benefits. For a complete listing of Medicare plans, please contact 1-800-MEDICARE (TTY users should call 1-877-486-2048), 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, or consult www.medicare.gov.