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Medicaid is a government medical assistance program for disabled and elderly people with limited income and resources.

Is there any difference between Medicaid and Medicare?

Both are government medical insurance programs. The difference is the eligibility requirements for the two programs. Medicaid is for disabled or elderly (age 65 and up) people with very limited assets and income. Medicare requires that someone have paid medicare premiums through their employers or self employment income. Medicare does not impose restrictions on income or assets for eligibility.

Does Medicaid charge any premiums, coinsurance or deductibles?

Medicaid is a needs based medical assistance program to help indigent people deal with the financial hardship medical expenses can impose on them. To charge any fees, coinsurance or a deductible would be counterproductive. No fees are charged to Medicaid recipients.

Does Medicare charge any fees such as premiums, coinsurance or deductibles?

Yes, Medicare charges all three of these fees. If a person has not received 40 work credits for Medicare covered wages or self employment income, there is a premium for Medicare inpatient hospital coverage. If a person has at least 40 work credits, there is no fee for the coverage.

Does Medicare provide coverage for outpatient expenses such as doctor office visits?

Yes. Medicare provides for doctor visits, laboratory fees, outpatient hospital services such as Xrays, MRIs etc. Monthly premium is $96.40. Annual deductible is $135.00. Coinsurance is 80% of all fees after the deductible is met.

If a person has both Medicaid and Medicare coverage, will Medicaid pay the Medicare premiums, deductible and coinsurance amounts?

Most states will pay the Medicare fees via Medicaid. By allowing Medicare to pay on a person's medical bills first, this puts less of a drain on the state's medicaid funds, allowing more coverage for uninsured and underinsured people.