Medicare advantage plans are designed to offer patients additional benefits when compared with original Medicare plans. Your coverage needs, budget, and other factors will determine whether a Medicare advantage plan is right for you. You can find out more about the plan and the perks here.
What Are the Differences Between Medicare Advantage Plans and Original Medicare Plans?
When you initially enroll in Medicare (and at certain times of the year), you can decide how you get your coverage. These include two main ways:
- Original Medicare – includes Medicare Part A, which is hospital insurance and covers things like hospitalization, home care, and other inpatient medical care needs, and Part B, which is medical insurance and covers outpatient care, such as doctors’ visits, medical and screening tests, and preventative care. You also have the option to add drug coverage, which is under a separate plan – Medicare drug plan (Part D), or you can add supplemental coverage to your original Medicare plan.
- Medicare Advantage, also known as Part C – is an alternative “bundled” plan that includes Medicare Part A, Part B, and usually Part D, and typically includes additional benefits such as dental, vision, hearing care, and more.
The Medicare health plan you go for will affect how much you pay for coverage, which doctors you can use, the services you get, and your overall quality of care.
Typically, with Original Medicare, you can use any doctor or hospital in the U.S. that takes Medicare. Whereas, on a Medicare Advantage plan, you will need to use doctors, hospitals, medical facilities, and other healthcare providers within the plan’s network (exceptions to this include emergency care, out-of-area urgent care, and temporary out-of-area dialysis). Medicare Advantage plans are offered by Medicare-approved private companies. They are obliged to follow rules set by Medicare. For some types of Medicare Advantage plans, you may be able to use out-of-network providers for covered services, but generally for a higher cost.
Why Choose A Medicare Advantage Plan?
Range of Services Covered
There are different types of Medicare Advantage plans, which can vary depending on the area you live in, but many cover all of the medically necessary services covered by Original Medicare, as well as offering extra benefits that are not covered by Original Medicare. This can include:
- Prescription drug coverage
- Routine dental care, including exams, X-rays, and dentures
- Vision care, including eye glasses and contact lenses
- Hearing care, including tests and hearing aids
- Fitness and wellness programs, such as gym memberships or discounts and SilverSneakers program for adults age 65 and over
Cost Saving Opportunities
The Medicare Advantage plan you go for will determine your costs, along with coverage. However, many Medicare Advantage plans feature low to no premiums and deductibles and typically have lower out-of-pocket costs for certain services. They also cap your maximum out-of-pocket expenses for Part C covered services, which means you pay nothing for the remainder of the year once you pay the set amount.
Plans Personalized to Your Needs
There are a variety of Medicare Advantage plans available that are designed to suit your specific needs. For example, if you have a chronic health condition, a Special Needs Plan (SNP) may be best suited and can help with the long-term medical costs for your condition.
Most Medicare Advantage plans come with additional benefits, such as dental, vision, and hearing care, offering you comprehensive care to fit all your healthcare needs.
Coordinated Medical Care
Coordinated medical care is a key feature for many Medicare Advantage plans. This means, all the physicians involved in your care communicate with one another and have a thorough knowledge of your health background to ensure care and treatment are tailored to your exact health needs. This can give you the peace of mind that your healthcare providers are proactive in your overall care and that your health needs are being met effectively.
Medicare Advantage Providers in Central and South Florida
If you are looking for high-quality, value-based medical and social services, contact Palm Medical Centers. We work with most Medicare Advantage health plans to ensure excellent health care is accessible to you and your loved ones.
Our diverse and dedicated team of providers make sure every patient receives the very best personalized care and treatment to improve overall health and well-being. We provide a wide range of health services, including primary care, in-house lab services, diagnostic services, social services, case management and clinical care, telemedicine, wellness services, and more.