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USA Federal Government Healthcare—Medicare Part A: Loan Insurance US

Saturday, June 14, 2014

1. Does the USA government provide healthcare to its citizens?

Answer — Yes, the federal government provides healthcare to the citizens through two programs --Medicare and Medicaid. However, these programs are not for all. Medicare is for senior citizens who are 65 or above only. In certain cases, disabled people also avail of it. On the other hand, Medicaid is a program designed for the low-income people. Their children under 6 also benefit from this program.
However, the much-discussed Obamacare promises healthcare for Medicaided people's children under 27.

2. Are Medicare and Medicaid free?

Answer — No, they are insurance plans. As such, they are not free. You buy them two ways—direct or indirect.
3. What is my eligibility for Medicare?

Answer — You are eligible if ---

a. You are 65 or above and paid up your social security taxes from your job of at least ten years (continuous or continual).

b. Your spouse (living, dead or separated) has paid up his/her social security taxes from his/her job of at least ten years (continuous or continual).

c. You or your spouse paid  your premiums for Medicare.

d. You or your spouse has been a government employee with Medicare benefits.

4. In what cases are people below 65 eligible for Medicare?
Answer -  In the following cases, you qualify for Medicare even if you are below 65---

a. If you have social security disability benefits.

b. If you have disability pension from the railroad authority.

c. If you have Lou Gehrig's disease or kidney failure, require dialysis or transplant.

d. If you are dependent of an eligible parent who is 50 or above.

3. What is basic Medicare?

Answer — Federal Government provides four types of healthcare insurance. They are--

a) for in-patients, known as Part A

b) for out-patients, known as Part B

c) for personal health requirements, known as Part C

d) for drug purchase, known as Part D

Of these, Part A and B are non-optional and federal-run. They are basic Medicare programs. The other two (C and D) are optional private insurance programs. You cannot get them unless you already are on Part A and B.

4. What does Part A cover? Are they ‘all free’?

Answer — Part A covers expenses for and certain support services to hospitalized patients. Following is a list of what Part A usually covers—

a) physician fees b) in-care nursing c) semi-private room  service d) meals e) certain therapies f) certain equipments g) diagnosis bills

Answer to your stem question—they are not ‘all free’. Guidelines are set for the program.

5. How do I get Medicare Part A?

Answer — You have it two ways—premium free and premium paid. You actually buy both. You buy or earn premium-free by already paying your or your spouse’s social security or payroll taxes for ten years or more. You pay premiums when you have worked less than ten years. Premiums vary depending on how long you/or your spouse have already worked.

6. Do I need to apply for Medicare before or when I turn 65?

Answer — You need to apply to your social security office if you are not already collecting any social security benefits. If you are enjoying any of them, it should have come to you automatically when you have turned 65. You usually receive your enrollment card three months before your turning 65. Your social security office sends this to you.

7. What should I do if I do not retire and enjoy social security benefits beyond 65?

Answer — Medicare is part of your social security benefits. So it comes with SS benefits. You should sign up for Medicare if you are deferring retirement.

8. Do I qualify for Medicare if I am divorced or widowed?

Answer — You do. If you are a widowed or divorced partner of someone who (has) earned his/her Medicare, you benefit from that.

9. Does a son or daughter of a deceased person benefit from his/her parent’s Medicare eligibility?

Answer - Yes, they do.

10. Do same-sex marriage partners qualify for Medicare?

Answer — Yes. The same rule of earning 10 year social security etc. applies to them. They have to be legally married in a state where same-sex marriage is recognized.

11. What if we married outside (same-sex)of our state or outside of the USA?

Answer — In that case, your case comes under the rule of the District of Columbia.

12. Can new immigrants get Medicare?

Answer — Once they have lived in the US for five years at a stretch, they can buy Medicare insurance. However, they will not get Part A.

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