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What is Medicare Part A

By July 11, 2023No Comments

Medicare Part A is a component of the U.S. federal health insurance program known as Medicare. It primarily covers inpatient hospital care, skilled nursing facility care, hospice care, and limited home healthcare services.

Regarding costs, here are some important points about Medicare Part A:

  1. Premium-Free Coverage: Most people who have worked and paid Medicare taxes for at least 10 years (40 quarters) are eligible for premium-free Part A. This means they do not pay a monthly premium for coverage.
  2. Hospital Deductible: In 2023, the Part A deductible for each benefit period is $1,600. A benefit period starts when a person enters the hospital or skilled nursing facility and ends when they have not received any inpatient care for 60 consecutive days.
  3. Coinsurance: After meeting the deductible, there may be coinsurance costs for hospital stays. For example, for days 61-90 of a hospital stay in a benefit period, the coinsurance amount is $400 per day in 2023. For stays beyond 90 days, there are additional costs.
  4. Skilled Nursing Facility Coinsurance: For days 21-100 of a skilled nursing facility (SNF) stay in a benefit period, there is a coinsurance amount. In 2023, the coinsurance is $200 per day.
  5. Lifetime Reserve Days: Medicare Part A also provides a number of “lifetime reserve days” that a person can use if they have an extended hospital stay. These are additional days beyond the 90-day limit in a benefit period and there may be significant coinsurance costs because of them.

It’s worth noting that while Part A covers many inpatient services, it doesn’t cover all costs. There may be other expenses such as physicians’ fees, prescription medications, and other services. You may be able to cover theses through Medicare Part B, Part D, or supplemental insurance (such as Medigap plans). It’s advisable to review the specific coverage details and costs to ensure coverage meets your individual needs.

Dan McGrath