Medicare Part A is hospital insurance that covers patient care in hospitals, nursing homes and skilled nursing facilities as well as home health services and home hospice care, reports Medicare.gov. Medicare Part B is medical insurance that covers visits to doctors, preventive services, durable medical equipment, lab tests and other medical services. Medicare Part C is private insurance coverage that offers all the benefits of traditional Medicare plus additional coverage, and Medicare Part D is prescription drug coverage, adds About.com.
Medicare Part A coverage for hospital or nursing facility stays includes a semiprivate room, nursing care, meals, supplies and other services, explains MedicineNet. Home health care may include part-time nursing care as well as physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech therapy. Medicare also supplies needed home equipment such as walkers and wheelchairs. Home hospice care includes the services of medical personnel, equipment and supplies, and drugs to control symptoms and pain.
Medicare Part A is free for most people, but everyone must pay a premium for Part B, according to About.com. Medicare Part C is Medicare-approved private health insurance. Besides traditional Medicare Parts A and B benefits, it also often covers prescription drugs, hearing, vision and dental care. Private insurance companies also handle Medicare Part D prescription drug plans.