Many people over the age of 65 or who are permanently disabled rely on Medicare for their healthcare coverage. This coverage appears to be adequate for many of those who have it however it is important to be aware that there are caps to it’s use. Knowing the facts will help before you have to ask “Can my Medicare benefits run out?”.
The main situations in which your Medicare benefits may run out include extended hospitalization and inpatient psychiatric or nursing home care. The basic chain of events that generally occurs is that a Medicare recipient becomes injured or ill and exceeds their 90 day lifetime allotment. If inpatient care remains necessary, the patient will then be placed in a skilled nursing facility, which Medicare will cover 100% for 20 days and then part of the cost for another 80 days. At this point, the patient will be converted to Medicare Part B.
If you’re asking yourself “Can my Medicare benefits run out?”, the bottom line answer is yes. This comes with the caveat that you can fill in many of the potential gaps in coverage with supplemental or “gap” plans. In addition, you can discuss your concerns with your primary care physician who may be able to treat you in an office visit, rather than as an inpatient.
The other thing to keep in mind is that you will never be denied healthcare. While this may be comforting in some respects, it is also a reminder for you to be proactive in your care. Don’t wait until you become seriously ill or injured to ask “Can my Medicare benefits run out?”. Think about worst case scenarios so that you and your family don’t have to make sudden, unexpected decisions.