We get asked this question all the time, so we thought it would be good to address the topic this month. Here is a summary of each program.
Medicare is a health insurance program for those 65 or older and for those receiving Social Security Disability for 2 years or more.Medicare is composed of a number of parts or sections. Medicare Part A (hospital benefits) and Part B (outpatient services). Any American citizen who has worked a combined total of at least 40 quarters in their lifetime and paid taxes is eligible for Medicare A with no premium. There is a premium for Part B. The Part B monthly premium is loosely based on your income bracket.
Medicaid provides health insurance for those Americans who are considered low income. Low income is based on specific guidelines established by the Federal Government. Medicaid is funded by States and Counties as well as subsidies from the Federal Government.
There are some who may be eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid. If a beneficiary is eligible for both programs the term used is “dual eligible”. In these cases, Medicare would be the primary payer.