In Utah, Medicare beneficiaries can choose from a number of plans, both from the federal component of the program and from the private sector.
Under the federal program, the option is Original Medicare, which includes Part A and Part B coverage. For private insurance, there is Medicare Advantage or Medicare Part C and Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap). The newest Medicare plan is Medicare Part D (for prescription drugs).
Utah Medicare application can be a hassle if you do not know which plan is right for you. My Bridge to Medicare and other industry experts explain each of them below:
Original Medicare, Part A and Part B
Original Medicare, or traditional Medicare, is the federal fee-for-service program. The most popular of all options, it gives beneficiaries inpatient hospital care covered by Part A, as well as physician services and medical equipment use (durable equipment only) under Part B.
Under Medicare Advantage or Medicare Part C, plans consist of same coverage as that of Original Medicare, Part A, and Part B (except for hospice care). However, other plans may give more like coverage for prescription drugs. In Utah, a little over a third of Medicare recipients avail of this plan, which is more than the national average of 30%.
Medicare Part D
Medicare Part D (Prescription Drug Plans) was institutionalized in 2006 after it was passed in the legislature in 2003. This plan provides coverage for prescription drugs that can be bought as an addition to a current Part A and Part B coverage.
Medicare Supplement (Medigap)
Medicare Supplement Insurance plans, popularly known as Medigap, cover both the costs of Part A and Part B coverage. Effectively, in different degrees, this plan covers Original Medicare premiums, as well as deductibles, copayments, and coinsurance that Original Medicare does not pay. Utah offers up to a maximum of 10 subsidized Medigap plans.
Applying for Medicare in Utah is straightforward as long as you know which type of plan is best for you. Original Medicare and Medicare Advantage are the major options. Only look for Part D or Medigap if you really need them.