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How Medicare Works

Learning about Medicare can be a daunting task. But it doesn’t have to be. HAP is here, helping you understand the basics of Medicare (Parts A, B, C and D), the three main types of Medicare (Original, Medicare Advantage, and Supplemental), and the enrollment timeline all the way from signing to switching when a plan doesn’t meet your needs. 

There are some great benefits that become available to you when you turn 65, and we want to make sure you’re able to make the most of them. Let’s start by taking a look at the basics of Medicare.

What is Medicare?

Medicare provides national health insurance for people age 65 years and older, and to select individuals with disabilities or specific medical conditions. Some health services are available at no cost while other options may carry a deductible or monthly cost.

What does Medicare cover?

Medicare is actually made up of four different types of coverage:

Part A

Medicare Part A helps cover inpatient care in hospitals, care in skilled nursing facilities, hospice care, and some home health care. It’s available at no cost for most people.

Part B

Medicare Part B helps pay for doctors (both in and out of the hospital), durable medical equipment and some medical services that are not covered by Part A. If you receive Social Security benefits, the Part B premium is usually deducted from your monthly check.

Part C

Part C, which includes Parts A and B plus additional benefits, is also known as Medicare Advantage. Many Medicare Advantage plans feature prescription drug coverage (including many HAP plans).

Part D

Medicare Part D helps pay for prescription drug coverage.

How much does Medicare cost?

Depending on the Medicare choices you make, your premium may be as little as $0* or as much as hundreds of dollars per month. With Medicare coverage, some health care services are covered in full while others have out-of-pocket costs.

* You must continue to pay your Medicare Part B premium. If you have a late enrollment penalty, it will still apply.

Health Alliance Plan (HAP) has HMO, HMO-POS, PPO plans with Medicare contracts. HAP Medicare Complete Duals (HMO D-SNP) is a Medicare health plan with a Medicare contract and a contract with the Michigan Medicaid Program. Enrollment depends on contract renewals.

Have Medicare questions?

(800) 868-9885 (TTY:711)

Monday-Friday; 8 am to 8 pm