This entitlement-based Federal program provides medical insurance for the aged or disabled. Although Medicare pays for expenses incurred during hospital stays, it may also assist with payments for up to 100 days in a Nursing Home – providing the individual meets certain requirements. Medicare will pay the entire cost for the first 20 days, with the individual required to pay their co-payment for the remaining 80 days.
Although many people have Supplemental Health Insurance policies to cover this co-payment, Medicare coverage does not necessarily remain in effect for the entire 80-day period following the first 20 days. Depending upon the individual’s medical condition, Medicare may cease payments at any time. Since it pays for a relatively short period of time, Medicare covers only 2% of Nursing Home expenses incurred within the United States.