Medicare Part A

Medicare Part A Coverage & Costs

Most people do not pay a premium for Part A (Hospital Insurance).  This is also known as “premium-free Part A.  If you or your spouse paid Medicare taxes for less than 10 years total, you will have a monthly cost for Part A of $458 (2020) per month.


Part A Hospital Inpatient Deductible and Coinsurance:

You pay (2020):

  • $1,408 deductible for each benefit period
  • Days 1-60: $0 coinsurance for each benefit period
  • Days 61-90: $352 coinsurance per day of each benefit period
  • Days 91 and beyond: $704 coinsurance per each “lifetime reserve day” after day 90 for each benefit period (up to 60 days over your lifetime)
  • Beyond lifetime reserve days: all costs

Part A Skilled Nursing Facility Care:

You pay (2020):

  • Days 1-20: $0 for each benefit period
  • Days 21-100: $176 coinsurance per day of each benefit period
  • Days 101 and beyond: all costs

Part A Home Health Services:

Medicare Part A covers eligible home health services such as intermittent skilled nursing care, physical, speech, and occupations therapy.

Part A Hospice:

You pay (2020):

  • $0 for hospice care
  • May have copay of not more than $5 for each prescription and other similar products for pain relief
  • May pay 5% of the Medicare-approved amount for respite care

Lifetime reserve days

In Original Medicare, these are additional days that Medicare will pay for when you’re in a hospital for more than 90 days. You have a total of 60 reserve days that can be used during your lifetime. For each lifetime reserve day, Medicare pays all covered costs except for a daily coinsurance.


Benefit period

The way that Original Medicare measures your use of hospital and skilled nursing facility (SNF) services. A benefit period begins the day you’re admitted as an inpatient in a hospital or SNF. The benefit period ends when you haven’t received any inpatient hospital care (or skilled care in a SNF) for 60 days in a row. If you go into a hospital or a SNF after one benefit period has ended, a new benefit period begins. You must pay the inpatient hospital deductible for each benefit period. There’s no limit to the number of benefit periods.