2019 Medicare Part A Changes:
Starting January 1st, 2019:
- Medicare Part A inpatient deductible for hospital admittance will increase from $1,340 to $1,364.
- The Medicare Part A premium for people with 30+ (but less than 40) quarters of work history, the premium for Part A is increasing from $232/month to $240/month.
- The Medicare Part A premium for people with fewer than 30 quarters of work history, the premium for Part A is increasing from $422/month to $437/month.
- Part A has a deductible that applies to each benefit period (rather than a calendar year deductible like Part B or private insurance plans) is increasing from $1,340 to $1,364*.
*This increase applies to all enrollees, although many enrollees have supplemental coverage that pays all or part of the Part A deductible.
- The Part A deductible covers the enrollee’s first 60 inpatient days during a benefit period. If the enrollee needs additional inpatient coverage during that same benefit period, there’s a daily coinsurance charge. In 2019, it’s $341 per day for the 61st through 90th day of inpatient care (up slightly from $335 per day in 2018). The coinsurance for lifetime reserve days is $682 per day in 2019 (up from $670 per day in 2018).
- For care received in skilled nursing facilities, the first 20 days are covered with the Part A deductible that was paid for the inpatient hospital stay that preceded the stay in the skilled nursing facility (Medicare only covers skilled nursing facility care if the patient had an inpatient hospital stay of at least three days before being transferred to a skilled nursing facility). But there’s a coinsurance that applies to days 21 through 100 in a skilled nursing facility. In 2019, it’s $170.50 per day, up from $167.50 per day in 2018.
Quick Guide To Medicare Part A
Part A (Hospital Insurance) Helps cover the following:
- Inpatient care in hospitals (such as critical access hospitals, inpatient rehabilitation facilities, and long term care hospitals)
- Inpatient care in a skilled nursing facility (not custodial or long term care)
- Hospice care services and home health care services
Part A is one of four types of insurance coverage offered by the Federal government for people who qualify. It is the only part that is automatically covered under Original Medicare, and most people do not pay a monthly premium for Part A coverage.
Most people will not have to pay a monthly cost (premium) for Part A, because they or their spouse paid Medicare taxes while they were working.
If you get benefits from Social Security or the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB), you automatically get Part A starting the first day of the month you turn age 65. If you are under age 65 and disabled, you automatically get Part A after you get disability benefits from Social Security or certain disability benefits from the RBB for 24 months. You will get your Medicare card in the mail 3 months before your 65th birthday or your 25th month of disability. If you have ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, also called Lou Gehrig’s disease), you automatically get Part A the month your disability benefits begin.
If you are not eligible for premium free Part A, you may be able to buy Part A if you meet the following conditions:
- You are 65 or older, and you are entitled to (or enrolling in) Part B and meet the citizenship or residency requirements.
- You are under age 65, disabled, and your premium free Part A coverage ended because you returned to work.
- You have not paid Medicare taxes through your employment.