As an introduction to Medicare Advantage Plans, it is important to know why these plans are essential. Your knowledge about these packages affect all the benefits and services you will receive. And since various types of Medicare Advantage are offered to the public, it is really recommended that you need to check first each plan before enrolling just to make sure that the benefits you’ll receive will satisfy your needs.
Is Medicare Advantage the same with Original Medicare?
Technically speaking, YES since both are health insurances which serve the same purpose of providing health care services to people once they reach the age of 65 and also with people who have chronic illnesses and disabilities. However, there is one major difference between the two. Original Medicare provides only the Part A (Hospital Insurance) and Part B (Medical Insurance) while Medicare Advantage Plans provide both but with extra benefits. These benefits however depend on which plan you’re using since there are various types of plan under this network. Despite being regulated by the rules set by Medicare, each plan also has distinct rules for their members to strictly follow to enjoy such benefits. Yet these rules will vary from one plan to another and is inconstant every year.
Points to consider about Medicare Advantage
- Medicare Advantage Plans are offered by private health insurance companies which are also Medicare-approved. Thus, you are still in the Medicare Program once you enroll in these plans and have the same Medicare rights and protections. These rights include your protection when you get the health care, assurance that you will get health care services that are provided by law, protection against unethical practices, and will protect and respect your privacy.
- You can still enjoy both hospital and medical insurance under these plans but with more benefits which Original Medicare doesn’t cover. These benefits include vision, hearing, dental, drug prescription coverage, and other fitness or health wellness programs.
- Another advantage also is that these plans are cost-effective since your unexpected out-of-pocket costs will be lowered. This is a result to the yearly limitations set by the rules of this network that you should follow in order to minimize such costs.
- You need to be an American citizen and is 65 years old and above to be eligible in applying for Medicare Advantage. You can also join these plans if you are living in a nursing home or needs to have a nursing care at home and even if you have pre-existing medical conditions or disabilities.
- Since this network has several types, it is important to check each plan to know the services covered and its associated costs. It is also recommended that you should follow the rules in every plan like going only to the doctors and health care institutions under the plan’s network to savor a minimal cost. Otherwise, you will be liable to fully pay the costs incurred outside the plan.
- Once your provider, like your doctor or hospital, leaves the network then you will be notified quickly so that you can choose a new provider who is still under this network’s coverage.