Medicare vs Medicaid

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Health insurance can be an expensive cost to any one of any age. There are programs out there that can help people with the expense of health insurance. These programs are offered by the federal government, the state government or the county government. Two of these programs are Medicare and Medicaid which are similar sounding government health care programs but there are differences in each of them. The Medicare program is for an individual who is at least 65 years old, under 65 and disabled, or any age with permanent kidney failure or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (Lou Gehrig’s disease). It also requires that the person is a U.S. citizen or has been a legal resident for five continuous years and has paid into Social Security for at least ten years and is eligible for the benefits. Medicare helps those people with the cost of health care, but it does not pay for all medical expenses or the cost of most long-term care. There are four parts to the Medicare program. Part A is the hospital insurance which helps pay for the in-patient care at a hospital or skilled nursing facility following a hospital stay, some in- home health care and hospice care. Part B is the medical insurance that helps pay for doctor visits and several other medical services and supplies that are not included by the hospital insurance. Part C also known as Medicare Advantage plan is like HMOs or PPOs and is offered by private companies approved by Medicare. The Medicare Advantage Plan provides all of Part A the hospital insurance, all of Part B medical insurance and may offer some extra coverage, such as vision, hearing, dental, and/or health and wellness programs as some include Medicare Part D, which is the prescription drug coverage. Part D is the prescription drug coverage that helps pay for doctor prescribed medications for treatment (Medicare, 2012). The Medicaid program is only available

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