Medicare and Medicaid (2009)
Medicare is a multi-part federal health insurance program managed by the federal government. A
person applies for Medicare through the Social Security Administration, but Medicare's rules are
written by another federal agency, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS), and Medicare
claims are processed by private insurance companies, called "Fiscal Intermediaries" and
"Medicare Carriers," that vary from state to state.
Medicaid helps pay for health care for people who fit within certain categories (such as being a
child or elderly or disabled or pregnant) and whose income and assets fall within certain limits
(which vary depending on which category a person fits within). Idaho's Medicaid program
covers many items and services, including the full range of long-term care. People who have
Medicare coverage may also qualify for Medicaid. When they do, Medicaid pays for their
Medicare premiums, deductibles, and co-payments, as well as for many health care items, such
as dental care, not covered by Medicare.