Medicare Part A is one-half of Original Medicare; the other half is Medicare Part B. Part A is considered the hospital insurance of Original Medicare as it covers inpatient services.
Other than covering inpatient services, Part A also covers:
- Skilled nursing facility care
- Nursing home care
- Hospice care
- Home health care
Eligibility and Costs
To be eligible for Part A, you must:
- Be 65 or older
- Be a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident of five years or more
By being enrolled in Social Security, you will be automatically enrolled in Part A.
For many, Part A is premium-free as the taxes paid into Medicare while working go towards Medicare coverage. As long as you have worked at least 10 years, you will receive premium-free Part A. If Medicare taxes were paid for less than 30 quarters, an estimated 7.5 years, you will pay a monthly premium of $471. If you paid Medicare taxes between 30 to 39 quarters, an estimated 7.5 to 9.5 years, you will pay a monthly premium of $259. Part A also has a deductible for each benefit period, which is currently $1,484.