Medicare Part A insurance helps pay for medically necessary care involving an inpatient stay in the hospital. Part A also helps pay for home health services.
Medicare Part A Coverage
Original Medicare, which includes Part A and Part B, provides for skilled nursing care and therapy that’s needed on a part-time or intermittent basis to individuals that are unable to leave the home. Examples include such treatments as speech therapy or physical therapy. It also covers some types of blood transfusions.
You can use your Medicare Part A insurance with any qualified provider in the United States. And, because Part A benefits are standardized throughout the United States, you are not limited to a particular state or region for your care.
Medicare Part A Premiums
If you or your spouse made payroll contributions to Social Security for at least ten years Medicare Part A is free. If you or your spouse did not contribute to Social Security for at least ten years you’ll pay a monthly premium of up to $451 per month in 2012. If you don’t qualify for Part A benefits without a premium, and you don’t enroll in Part A when you first become eligible, your premium may be higher.
You must pay your annual deductible before Part A begins paying its portion of your costs. In 2012, the Part A deductible is $1,156 per benefit period.
Medicare Part A Copay
After you have stayed in the hospital or in a skilled nursing facility for an extended period you will need to pay a copay amount. Here are the Part A copays for 2012:
- For extended stays in the hospital, you’ll pay $289 per day for days 61 through 90 and $578 per day for days 91 through 150.
- When you are in a skilled nursing facility for an extended period you’ll pay $144.50 for days 21 through 100 that you stay.
- You’ll also be required to pay a copay of up to $5 for each drug prescription you receive in hospice care as an outpatient.
Medicare Part A Coinsurance
If you use inpatient respite care as a hospice patient you will pay a small coinsurance payment.