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Medicare Advantage vs Medicare: What’s the “Advantage” of Medicare Advantage Plans?

Medicare Advantage vs. Medicare

Medicare Advantage vs Medicare is a tough choice until you learn more about Medicare Advantage plans. Give our knowledgeable licensed agents a call today at (800) 950-0608 to learn about and compare Medicare Advantage plans in your area.

Just the Essentials:

  • There are several key differences between the Original Medicare program (Medicare Part A and Medicare Part B) and Medicare Advantage (Medicare Part C).

  • Only Medicare Part A and Medicare Part B are provided by the Federal Government.

  • Medicare Advantage plans are provided by private health insurance companies.

  • A Medicare Advantage plan, or Medicare Part C plan, may cover many treatments and services that Original Medicare will not.

  • Call (800) 950-0608, or use our free plan finder tool, to compare Medicare Advantage plans near you.

Original Medicare vs Medicare Advantage - What’s the Difference?

“All Medicare plans are the same.”

That’s a very common misconception. In many cases, “Medicare” is used as a catch-all to discuss all types of Medicare plans within the Medicare program. While they are indeed similar in many ways, Medicare plans are all designed differently, and the differences depend on a variety of factors. Just trying to learn and understand all of the differences and similarities can make learning about Medicare plans seem like a difficult task.

Once you’ve done a little bit of research and plan comparing, though, it all becomes clear, trust us! Today, we’re going to help simplify the subject even more by discussing the differences between Original Medicare, Medicare Parts A and B, and Medicare Advantage, Medicare Part C. Keep reading for all the important stuff!

Original Medicare is Offered by the Federal Government

Knowing the key difference regarding Original Medicare vs Medicare Advantage comes down to one point. Original Medicare is the only plan type that’s offered by the federal government. 

While the federal government authorizes private insurers to offer other types of Medicare services and treatment plans and places certain rules on the coverage they offer, it does not offer them. The Medicare plans that are offered by private medical insurance companies include:

  • Medicare Part C, or Medicare Advantage
  • Medicare Part D Prescription Drug coverage
  • Medigap or a Medicare supplement plan

What is Medicare Part C?

If you’re new to Medicare, the only plan you may be aware of is Original Medicare (a.k.a. Traditional Medicare), and this can leave you with a lot of questions. Luckily for you, we have answers!

Medicare Part C is a form of private health insurance, also known as Medicare Advantage. Private health insurers cannot simply offer Medicare Advantage plans because they wish to do so. They must first be authorized by the federal government to carry plans that bear the Medicare designation.

Medicare Advantage plans are a type of private health plan that offer the same coverage offered by Traditional Medicare. This includes:

  • Coverage for short to medium term inpatient hospitalization
  • Coverage for visits to your Primary Care Physician (PCP)
  • Coverage for diagnostic tests and preventive healthcare services
  • Coverage for physician-administered prescription medications

One primary drawback is that while you can use Traditional Medicare with any healthcare provider that accepts Medicare assignment, Medicare Advantage binds you to a network. In many cases, you cannot use healthcare providers outside of your network with a Medicare Advantage plan unless it’s medically necessary. Your Advantage plan may also require you to get a referral to see a specialist, where the Traditional Medicare program does not require specialist referrals often.

For each possible drawback, Medicare Part C offers many advantages that Traditional Medicare does not. Let’s take a look at some of the advantages that Medicare Advantage plans have over Traditional Medicare.

Compare Medicare Advantage Plans: The Advantages of Medicare Advantage vs Medicare

Traditional Medicare offers plenty of coverage for most medically necessary treatments and services. However, it doesn’t offer coverage for certain health services that seniors need or utilize most. For instance, Traditional Medicare doesn’t cover:

  • Hearing care, such as hearing exams and hearing aids
  • Vision care, such as vision tests and eyeglasses
  • Dental care, such as dental exams and denture fittings

Medicare Advantage plans offer coverage for all of those services and often more. Many Medicare Advantage plans offer all of the above to Medicare beneficiaries, plus the following:

  • Transportation to and from medical appointments
  • Delivery of healthy meals for seniors
  • Allowances for over-the-counter medications
  • Assistance with covering deductibles and copays
  • Assistance with purchasing healthy groceries

In order to be able to take advantage of some of these extra benefits, you’ll need to live in an area that offers them. You may also need to meet certain requirements for eligibility. To find an Advantage plan that offers the coverage and benefits you need, it’s best to search for and Medicare Advantage plans near you. 

For those of you who are ready to compare Medicare Advantage plans in your area, we offer a handy free plan finder that you’ll find at the bottom of this page. How can you use our free plan finder to find great Medicare Advantage plans? All you’ll need to do is enter your zip code, and you’ll be discovering plans in no time.

Medicare vs. Medicare Advantage

How Do I Know Which Plans are Right for Me?

In the end, no one can tell you whether an Original Medicare or a Medicare Advantage or Part C plan will work best for you. Discovering the right plan for your needs comes down to doing research and comparing the options available to you. Medicare Advantage plans offer many benefits, but you may be finding it tough to find one in your area that meets your needs.

If you’re interested in Medicare Advantage plans, but you’re having trouble finding and comparing them, we can help. Our licensed agents are available to answer any questions you may have about the coverage offered by Medicare Advantage vs. Medicare coverage. To reach our licensed agents, give us a call today at (800) 950-0608.

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