You may be in the hospital more than once during one benefit period. For example, imagine you are in the hospital for a short stay and then released. Now imagine that you go back into the hospital the next week for the same health problem. That means you have two hospital stays within one benefit period. You would pay one deductible.
Medicare Hospital Benefit Period
Beyond 90 days of inpatient hospital care in the same benefit period, you are responsible for 100 percent of the costs. However, Medicare allows you a further 60 days of “lifetime reserve” days. This means that for the rest of your life you can draw on any of these 60 days—but no more—to extend Medicare coverage in any benefit period. In 2014, your share of the cost is $608 a day. But if you have any type of Medicare supplemental insurance (also known as medigap), your policy covers an additional 365 life-time reserve days, with no copays.
Compare Medicare Advantage & Supplemental Plans
Medicare Advantage insurance is offered by private insurance companies with a Medicare contract, and replaces Original Medicare Part A and Part B. You must continue to pay your Part B premiums. Medicare Advantage plans typically offer additional benefit options and have less cost-sharing than Original Medicare, and you may have to pay a monthly premium in return for the extra benefits. Medicare Advantage plans come in a variety of formats, such as HMO, PPO and PFFS plans, as well as special needs plans. Medicare beneficiaries can enroll in Medicare Advantage plans if they have Medicare Part A and Part B, but only during designated enrollment periods. These enrollment periods change from time-to-time, so please call us to get the most-up-to-date information.