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Hospice Needs and Medicare Long-Term Care Insurance

Does Medicare provide coverage for long-term care needs?

Typically, the answer is no. When you reside in a nursing home, you are most likely there for an indeterminate period of time and need daily non-medical support with activities like washing, grooming, and medication monitoring. Unfortunately, Medicare does not provide coverage for this type of life event.

  • Medicare Parts A and B are crucial to have even though they do not cover indefinite stays since they help with the costs of hospital treatment, doctor visits, and medical supplies. Additionally, Medicare provides some coverage if you require short-term, medically required nursing care, such as after being released from the hospital after having heart surgery or a hip replacement. This care might be provided in a nursing home or a skilled nursing facility (SNF).

Nursing Home Care under Medicare

A Medicare Advantage plan and Original Medicare handle nursing facility costs in somewhat different ways.

The majority of nursing home care is not covered by Original Medicare unless the facility is also a skilled nursing facility (SNF), in which case you are eligible for SNF benefits for up to 100 days. The majority of nursing home care involves assistance with daily living tasks, however Medicare nursing home coverage is extremely constrained in this area.

Nursing home care may be covered through Medicare Advantage Plans, often known as Medicare Part C. If the nursing home doesn’t have a contract with the plan, these plans normally don’t assist pay for this service. Before you make any plans to enter a nursing home, inquire about your plan’s nursing home coverage. Ask the health plan whether they inspect the nursing home for care quality if the nursing home has a contract with them.

Will a Part D prescription plan be of assistance?

Your Medicare Part D coverage will cover these costs since your medicines will be filled by the nursing home, which is covered by the program. You are free to change Medicare medication coverage while residing in a nursing home or other comparable institution. Additionally, if you leave the institution, you are free to change your mind. Your designated legal representative may enrol you in a medication plan on your behalf if you are unable to do so yourself.

Skilled nursing facilities (SNF) and Medicare

Following a hospital stay, those who need rehabilitation or assistance with everyday tasks may temporarily reside in a skilled nursing facility. SNFs provide as a setting for care transitioning from the hospital to the home. Many SNF services are, in most cases, partially or completely, paid by Medicare when the stay is required to achieve a medical purpose. Days 1 through 20 cost nothing during the benefit period, Days 21 through 100 have a $200 coinsurance fee (2023 rate) paid by the patient or their insurance, and Days 101 and above cost nothing at all. These services consist of:

  • Medications
  • Meals
  • Skilled nursing care
  • Physical and occupational therapy
  • Speech-language pathology services
  • Dietary counseling
  • Medical supplies and equipment used in the facility
  • Semi-private room (a room you share with other patients)
  • Ambulance transportation to the nearest supplier of needed services
  • Medical social services

How do Medicaid and Medicare cooperate to fund long-term care?

While Original Medicare does not typically cover nursing home care, if the facility is also a skilled nursing facility, you may be eligible for benefits for up to 100 days. Medicaid may be able to pay for your care in a skilled nursing facility if you don’t fulfil Medicare’s standards for one or have used up all of your coverage. You must demonstrate that your income and assets fall inside a predetermined range in order to qualify for Medicaid. To check eligibility, get in touch with a Medicaid agency in your state as Medicaid regulations vary from state to state.

Hospice care and Medicare

A range of care is provided during hospice care. Every hospice patient must receive the services on a list that Medicare has put up. The following services are anticipated to be covered by Medicare Part A if required during a terminal illness and/or associated condition(s) and prescribed by your hospice care team:

  • Speech-language pathology services
  • Social worker services
  • Dietary counseling
  • Grief and loss counseling for you and your family
  • Short-term inpatient care (for pain and symptom management)
  • Short-term respite care (may need to pay a small copayment)
  • Doctor services
  • Nursing care
  • Medical equipment (like wheelchairs or walkers)
  • Medical supplies (such as bandages and catheters)
  • Prescription drugs for symptom control or pain relief (you may need to pay a small copayment)
  • Hospice aide and homemaker services
  • Physical and occupational therapy
  • Any other Medicare-covered services needed to manage your pain and other symptoms related to your terminal illness, as recommended by your hospice team.


Medicare Part A will offer you valuable and comprehensive coverage if you need hospice care, including:

  • The whole cost of your hospice treatment
  • All except $5 is needed for prescription medications to ease the terminal illness’s discomfort and bring comfort.
  • 90% for hospital-based respite care. In the event that you get hospice care at home, respite care arranges for you to occasionally receive short inpatient respite care in a Medicare-approved facility (such as a hospice inpatient facility, hospital, or nursing home), providing your daily career with a break. Each time you get respite care, you may stay at the facility for up to 5 days.


In the event that you also have Medicare Supplement Insurance, it will pay:

  • Copayments for prescription medications range from $2.50 to $500.
  • 5% to 5% for inpatient respite care (based on the choice and availability of plans)

What are your Medicare Part A hospice benefits NOT covering?

The following are some forms of care that your Medicare hospice benefit does not cover:

  • A procedure or prescription drugs used to treat your terminal condition
  • Any care not arranged by a hospice care team that has been approved
  • Any E.R. care, inpatient treatment, or ambulance transport not associated with your terminal disease or not organized by your hospice care team Your room and board should you get hospice care where you reside

DreamHealth can assist.

We can assist you in understanding Medicare and its hospice and long-term care benefits. Start right away to make sure you are receiving all the advantages you are entitled to. There is no requirement to enrol, and the service is free.

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