As complex and confusing as Medicare can be, the underlying purpose of the program is a simple one: getting the health care you need from the providers you want at a price that won’t drain your hard-earned retirement savings. But your community likely has lots of doctors, hospitals, and pharmacies to choose from. How do you find a physician with whom you feel comfortable or a hospital best suited to providing you with the best treatment?
Medicare can help you with that. Medicare’s website provides several online tools to assist individuals with identifying and comparing doctors, hospitals, and other health care services. Here are some of these helpful resources
Physician Compare can help you find a physician by name, specialty, solo or group practice, or condition. It lists practitioners by how close they are to your home.
You can filter search results by gender, board certification, and other criteria. Once you find a doctor you think fits the bill, you can check with them to confirm whether they are a participating Medicare doctor, meaning they accept the Medicare fee schedule amounts with you being responsible for 20 percent of the costs of care. If they’re not a participating Medicare doctor, you may have to pay more out of pocket.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has also produced a video that gives some examples of how to use Physician Compare.
Hospital Compare helps consumers compare and choose from more than 4,000 Medicare-certified hospitals across the country, including 130 Veterans Administration medical facilities.
The government rates hospital quality on a one- to five-star scale based on more than 50 factors. The most common hospital rating is three stars.
CMS has also produced a handy online guide to choosing a hospital that can help you locate the hospital that’s right for you
Inpatient Rehabilitation Facility Compare
Inpatient Rehabilitation Facility Compare shows you information about more than 1,100 rehab facilities across the country, including how many rehab facilities are within 100 miles of your zip code and information about which conditions each facility has treated and how often.
Hospice Compare allows you to look for hospice care by using either your zip code or the name of the provider you want to get your care from. The site provides information on the quality of care at each facility and also contains a checklist of questions you should ask when evaluating hospice care for yourself or a loved one.
Contact Every Way Health To Learn More About Medicare and Medigap Coverage
If you need assistance in choosing the Medicare supplemental insurance plan that’s best for you, please get in touch with Every Way Health at 877-460-3943.