Last Updated on by
Medicare Part B covers visits to urgent care centers, as well as regular doctor appointments. You can visit any urgent care in the country that takes Medicare. The urgent care will bill Medicare, and you’ll only pay the portion of the bill in the form of deductibles or copays. Most urgent care facilities do accept Medicare. If the facility accepts Medicare, they’ll also take your Medigap plan. Occasionally a recipient comes across an urgent care center that is out of network with the Advantage plan. It’s essential to ask the facility each time before getting treatment.
How Much Does Medicare Pay for Urgent Care
As long as the urgent care you choose to go to accepts Medicare, you’ll have 80% of the cost covered. Since Part B does come with a deductible, you’ll have to pay that out of pocket if it has not been met yet for the calendar year. If you have a Medicare Supplement plan, you will have the remaining 20% insurance covered and possibly the deductible under Part B as well.
The cost of a trip to urgent care can vary depending on where you live and what kind of treatment you need. A typical urgent care visit costs less than $200, while a trip to the emergency room can cost ten times as much.
Medicare Supplement Coverage for Urgent Care
Medicare Advantage Coverage for Urgent Care
Medicare Reimbursement for Urgent Care Centers
Urgent Care vs. ER vs. Retail Clinics
Urgent care, emergency rooms, and retail clinics are all designed to handle immediate medical needs. But there are differences in the kind of care they can provide.
Retail clinics in pharmacies and grocery stores use nurse practitioners. They can diagnose and treat common illnesses like flu, strep throat, and ear infections.
Urgent care centers have doctors on staff. They can handle the same minor illnesses as retail clinics. They can also take x-rays, treat sprains or broken bones, treat minor burns, and stitch up wounds. Urgent care centers aren’t equipped to handle serious medical emergencies. They don’t have specialists or surgeons and can’t do advanced testing like MRIs and CT scans. If your gut tells you that you need an emergency room level of care, don’t hesitate to go to the ER.
The emergency room is much more expensive than an urgent care facility. You can keep your healthcare costs down by going to urgent care for minor ailments. If you have a life-threatening emergency like a heart attack, stroke, head injury, potential overdose, or serious accident, you should always go to the emergency room.