Medicare Advantage Plans (Part C) are health maintenance organizations (HMOs) or preferred provider organizations (PPOs) that cover all the same services as Traditional Medicare (Parts A and B). In addition, most MA plans include prescription drug coverage and offer additional benefits such as vision, hearing and dental services.
These plans are administered by private insurance companies approved by Medicare. Instead of selecting any doctor or hospital, as in Traditional Medicare, a person who joins a Medicare Advantage plan uses the doctors and hospitals in the plan's provider network.
Medicare pays a set amount each month for a participant’s care to the private insurers providing Part C plans. The companies must follow Medicare requirements, but they can charge different prices for out-of-pocket costs and have different rules for getting services. Beneficiaries also typically pay monthly premiums.
About 25 percent of Medicare beneficiaries are enrolled in Medicare Advantage. The other 75 percent are in Traditional Medicare.
What Types of Services Are Covered Under Medicare?
What Services Are Not Covered by Medicare?
Does Medicare Cover Long-Term Care, Skilled Nursing Facility Care and Nursing Home Care?