What is the difference between Medicare and Medicaid? The U.S. government’s health plans are Medicare and Medicaid even though they have very similar names, their benefits and requirements are very different. Medicare is health insurance for people 65 years or older, while Medicaid is insurance for people whose income and resources are limited.
Medicare : To qualify for Medicare you must be 65 years or older or have any disability. People with end-stage renal disease (permanent kidney failure) can apply for Medicare. The Original Medicare has two parts or coverages that cover under different situations and requirements.
Part A is intended to cover the hospital’s costs. For example, hospitalization, specialized nursing centers and home health care.You do not have to pay part A’s monthly premium if you paid your Medicare taxes while you were working.
However, if you do not qualify for part A free of charge you can buy it. On the other hand part B helps to cover medical services such as outpatient care, medical equipment and preventive services.
Medicare Advantage : The Medicare Advantage Plan provides more comprehensive coverage, including all the benefits and services covered by Original Medicare part A and part B. It also includes coverage for medical prescriptions. Medicare Part C brings together all the benefits of Original Medicare as hospitalization and medical costs. However part D covers prescription drugs.
Medicaid : Medicaid is a federally-funded medical coverage program administered by the Government of each state. The plan was created as a welfare service in 1965 by the government of President Lyndon B. Johnson. In this system, your taxes help pay for health expenses. Medicaid does not pay for the services in its entirety, but it is of the most economical programs.
If you have few income you should consider applying for Medicaid. Because insurance can help you cover medical expenses and offers the following benefits:
- Doctor Visits
- Preventive care (vaccinations, mammograms, colonoscopies, etc.)
- Prenatal and maternity care
- Mental health care
- Vision and dental care (for children)
It differs with Medicare in the type of people it covers and the services it provides.
Medicaid helps people and families who do not meet the poverty level established by the Government (Federal Poverty Level or FPL).
You may qualify for Medicaid if you:
- Is an eligible immigrant
- Is an adult without dependent children (in some states)
- Is a parent or adult caring for a child
- Is 65 years or older
- Is under 19 years old
- Are pregnant
- Has a disability
When you get Medicaid you automatically get coverage to pay for prescription drugs. If you want to get Medicaid or Medicare, you can visit the Health Department page of your state. However, if you do not qualify for these medical plans, which is provided by the United States Government, you may consider purchasing private insurance.
According to government figures, Medicaid provides medical coverage to about 70 million people in the United States, including adults, children, pregnant women, people with disabilities, and also some retirees who receive Medicare.