What is Medicare?

In simple terms, Medicare is a government health care program for people ages 65 and over. However, it is also for people with certain disabilities such as MS, ALS, end-stage kidney failure and a few others.

President Franklin Roosevelt signed Social Security into law in 1935, and 60 years later, in 1965, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed a Medicare bill into law. Over the years, the coverage has evolved significantly, covering more people than in initial stages.

Medicare is the federal health insurance program for:

  • People who are 65 or older
  • Certain younger people with disabilities
  • People with End-Stage Renal Disease (permanent kidney failure requiring dialysis or a transplant, sometimes called ESRD)

The different parts of Medicare help cover specific services:

Learn more about the Parts of Medicare. 

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