You’ve probably heard the Medicare alphabet before: Part A, Part B, Part D and more. But what does all of it mean? We talk a lot about the Medicare Part D prescription drug benefit here on Medicare Monday, but what about the rest of the Medicare alphabet? Today, we’re tackling Medicare Part B and what it covers.
First, Medicare Part B is commonly referred to as the Medicare medical benefit and covers a wide range of health care services. Medicare Part B covers physician office visits, outpatient care, ambulance services and medical equipment like a wheelchair or walker. To learn more about what Medicare covers, check out Medicare.gov.
When it comes to medicines, Part B covers medications that are administered by a physician, like vaccinations or chemotherapy that is injected or infused. These medicines represent some very significant medical advances, including breakthroughs in cancer, rheumatoid arthritis and autoimmune conditions.
Patients may be given these medicines across a number of different care settings. Approximately 600 Part B drugs are administered in different locations like hospital outpatient departments, physician offices, patient’s homes and dialysis centers.
Check back with Medicare Monday for more on Part B and other aspects of Medicare next week.
Allyson Funk Ally is a former senior director of public affairs at PhRMA focused on advocacy issues for the biopharmaceutical industry. Her expertise includes Medicare, Medicaid, 340B, health reform and more. Prior to PhRMA, her experience included leading health communications for a large membership organization, supporting public affairs clients and working for the governor of Louisiana.