What is the difference between Medicare and Medicaid?

Medicare and Medicaid are two different government-run programs, both created in 1965 to assist older and low-income Americans to purchase private health insurance. These programs were part of President Johnson’s “Great Society” vision and commitment to meeting individual health care needs. Medicare and Medicaid are social insurance programs allowing the financial burdens of illness to be shared among both healthy and sick individuals and affluent and low-income families.

Medicaid is not the same as Medicare.

Medicare is a federal program that provides health coverage to individuals 65 or older, or individuals with a severe disability, no matter their income. Medicaid is a state and federal program that provides health coverage to individuals with a very low-income based on the Federal Poverty Guidelines. If you are eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid (known as a “dual eligible”), you can have both. Medicare and Medicaid will work together to provide you with health coverage.

For more information regarding Medicaid and Medicare, you can visit the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)’s official website, or you can contact a licensed sales agent at Medicare Pathways by calling 866-466-9118.