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Original Medicare or Medicare Advantage

How do they compare?

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Original Medicare

Offers health insurance to U.S. citizens and qualified legal residents age 65 and older. People younger than 65 with certain medical problems also qualify for it. Original Medicare is run by the federal government, and includes two parts. Part A helps pay for hospital care. Part B helps pay for doctor visits.

  • You pay for every visit and every procedure.
  • You have to make sure you get the care you need. Plus you have limited time with your doctor.
  • Your doctor is paid for the number of tests and procedures ordered, not for keeping you healthy.
  • Original Medicare doesn’t place any limits on your yearly costs.
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Medicare Advantage

A different way to get Medicare. It covers everything that Original Medicare does, plus more. It’s sold by private insurance companies. With a Medicare Advantage plan, your doctors will talk to each other and work together to give you the care you need.

  • Potential savings on doctor visits and prescription drugs.
  • Your doctor and care team make sure you get the care you need, when you need it.
  • Your doctor is rewarded for helping you stay healthy, not paid by the test or procedure.
  • Limits your yearly costs. Many plan members save $1,965* each year over Original Medicare.
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What's the difference?

 Original MedicareMedicare Advantage
Hospital staydonedone
Doctor visits
Flu shots and other care designeddonedone
Prescription drugsNodone
Dental Nodone
No-cost rides to doctor visits Nodone
Limits your annual out-of-pocket costsNodone
Fitness membership and weight loss programsNodone

Get started with 3 easy steps


Choose a doctor

Our doctors specialize in caring for patients 65+.


Find care

Understand Medicare choices

Medicare Advantage plans often give you better care at lower costs.


Learn more

Choose a plan

Call now to talk with a licensed insurance agent and learn more about your Optum doctor and Medicare choices.


Call 1-877-247-2850 TTY 711 

Call 1-844-575-1504 (CA residents only)

Call 1-866-955-2487 (CT residents only)

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*Better Medicare Alliance, State of Medicare Advantage 2021. Published May 2021.

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† The contact information listed will direct you to a licensed representative that works with Medicare enrollees to explain Medicare Advantage and Prescription Drug Plan options. There may not be plans available in your area. Any information provided is limited to those plans offered in your area. Please contact Medicare.gov or 1-800-MEDICARE to get information on all of your options.