What Is Medicare Part A?

The two parts of Original Medicare are Parts A and B. As Americans get older and get closer to retirement age, they look more and more into what Medicare is, what it covers, and how to apply for it.

Therefore, it is important to know what the two primary parts of Medicare are and what they cover. For now, we’ll only be reviewing Medicare Part A and we will review Parts B, C, and D in a future article.

So What Is Medicare Part A?

Medicare Part A is hospital insurance. This means that it covers inpatient care and hospital fees. However, it does not cover doctor’s services. That is where the other parts of Medicare come into play.

What is Inpatient Care?

While the definition of inpatient care may vary by hospital, it primarily relates to a patient who will at least be admitted overnight.

If the patient would be released same day, generally they would be considered outpatient.

So is There Anything Else that Medicare Part A Covers?

Aside from covering the hospital fees themselves, Part A covers: skilled nursing care facilities, short-term nursing home care, hospice, and home health care.

Great, So How Much Does Medicare Part A Cost?

Generally, for most taxpayers Medicare Part A is completely free. The reason for this is we’ve been paying into it for most of our working lives so it is what is referred to as an entitlement.

The logic is similar to Social Security. We paid into the system while we worked and we get to take from the system when we retire.

So There is No Deductible Either?

When we say free, we mean that there is no premiums. There is, however, a deductible when you use Medicare, just like any other health insurance plan. The maximum will vary by year, so check with to ensure you know the maximum you would have to pay out of pocket.


This article is not intended to be financial, tax, or legal advice. For help regarding your specific situation, please consult your local professional.