Intensive Care Unit (ICU) stays are designated for those whose lives are at risk. Common reasons for ICU treatment include surgical complications, inconsistencies in pulse and blood pressure, hypoxia, and severe head injuries. If this happens to you, you can expect to stay hospitalized between 10 to 25 days.
This type of serious medical attention can cause significant debt. Luckily, Medicare takes care of you if you are in this situation.
How does Medicare take care of this?
Medicare is divided into four Parts – A, B, C, and D. These all have their own purpose. In this case, Part A is the most relevant since it is focused on inpatient treatment.
Part A covers hospital costs such as medical treatments, your room, meals, medications, and supplies used in treatment.
Medicare Part C, also known as Medicare Advantage, also helps cover ICU stays because this policy includes Part A and Part B.
What costs do I need to pay?
Your Part A coverage requires you to pay its premiums, deductible, and coinsurance.
Your Part A premiums might be free if you were automatically enrolled and paid at least 40 quarters (ten years) of Medicare taxes while working. If you do not get premium-free Part A and paid less than 40 quarters in taxes, your premiums can be $259 up to $471 per month.
The remaining costs depend on where you are during the benefit period. A benefit period starts when you’re admitted as an inpatient and lasts until you have gone 60 consecutive days without getting inpatient treatment.
For the first 60 days of the benefit period, you pay $0 in coinsurance. For days 61-90, you pay $371 per day of the benefit period, and for days 91-150 (lifetime reserve days), the coinsurance is $742 per day. You pay all costs after that.
How much can I expect to pay for a stay in the ICU?
ICU hospitalizations typically last no longer than 25 days. With coinsurance costing nothing for the first 60 days, this will likely be the case for you. Your only costs would be the Part A premium (if you do not have the premium-free version) and the $1,484 deductible.
What else can help?
Suppose you want additional coverage to reduce Part A deductibles and coinsurance costs. In that case, you may consider joining a Medicare Supplement Plan (also known as Medigap). This is divided into Plans A, B, C, D, F, G, K, L, M, and N.
Any Medigap plan other than Medigap Plan A will cover the Part A deductible. All Medigap plans cover Part A coinsurance up to 365 days after Medicare hospital benefits are exhausted.
With a Medigap plan, you may end up paying nothing for your ICU stay, even in the unlikely event that you are in there for over 60 days.
We can help you avoid ICU debt
Medicare is our specialty. A medical emergency is traumatic enough – you shouldn’t have to worry about medical debt. At Turning 65 Solutions, we give you a way to take care of your medical needs without financial stress. Call us today at 830-217-6711, so we can help you get the Medicare coverage you need.