Medicare - How Does It Work? Part C
A Medicare Advantage Plan is a type of Medicare health plan offered by a private insurance company that contracts with Medicare to provide you with your Part A and Part B benefits. Many Medicare Advantage Plans include Part D as part of their plan. Individuals who select Medicare Advantage choose to receive their health services through an insurance carrier, rather than Original Medicare. Medicare Advantage Plans include:
- Health Maintenance Organizations (HMO)
- Preferred Provider Organizations (PPO)
- Private Fee-For-Service Plans
- Special Needs Plans
- Medical Savings Account Plans
How To Apply for Medicare Part C?
You generally must be enrolled in Part A and Part B before you can enroll in a Medicare managed care plan. If you want to join a Medicare managed care plan, you can begin by logging onto the Medicare website to find and compare Medicare health plans in your area. You can see how the different plans stack up according to useful indices such as: premium, prescription drug coverage, doctor and hospital networks, outpatient surgery costs and much more.
Remember, not all Medicare Advantage Plans work the same way and costs vary among offerings. Once you understand the plan’s rules and costs, here’s how to join:
- Visit the plans website to see if you can join online.
- Contact the plan to request an enrollment form, fill it out and return it to the plan.
- Call the plan you want to join.
- Call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227)
When you join a Medicare Advantage Plan, you’ll have to provide Medicare number and the date your Part A and or Part B coverage started. This information is on your Medicare card.
Persons opting for Medicare Advantage Plans are still required to pay their Part B premiums and there may be additional premiums associated with Medicare Advantage Plans which are set by different carriers.