Medicare is an asset to millions of Americans who rely upon the federal insurance program to meet their health care needs. While Medicare covers many different types of health services, the coverage of over-the-counter medications can be confusing. While Medicare does not usually help pay for over-the-counter medications, there are certain circumstances that may allow for coverage. Understanding your benefits will help you make the best decisions regarding how to pay for Tylenol when it is necessary for you or your loved one.
What Is Tylenol?
Tylenol is a brand name form of acetaminophen. It is commonly used to reduce fever and pain in patients, and it may be administered in a variety of different forms that range from pills to suppositories and oral liquids. Tylenol and its generic forms are found in most pharmacies and supermarkets over-the-counter. However, some physicians may prescribe stronger forms of the medication for people who need a higher dosage level to address more severe needs, such as post-operative pain.
Do Medicare Plans Cover Tylenol?
As a general rule, Medicare does not cover medications that are available over-the-counter. There are situations when an exception may apply. For instance, Tylenol can be covered under certain circumstances that fall within the guidelines issued for specific Medicare plans.
Medicare Part A
Under Medicare Part A, medicine that an inpatient receives while admitted into a medical facility such as a hospital or hospice will usually be covered. For those who are receiving inpatient care, Medicare coverage of Tylenol is likely, although it may be a generic form of the drug.
Medicare Part B
Medicare Part B (Medical Insurance) may cover medications that are administered in an outpatient facility, which can also include Tylenol. Keep in mind, however, that Part B will not cover any type of medication that a person purchases at the facility or a pharmacy to use at home.
Medicare Part C
Medicare Advantage plans, also known as Part C, is another option for Medicare recipients. MA plans are offered by private insurance companies that contract with Medicare to cover at least the same Part A and Part B benefits as Original Medicare. These MA plans often include additional benefits that may allow for some coverage of over-the-counter medications.
Medicare Part D
Even though Part D coverage is optional, many people find that prescription drug coverage is essential to their portfolio of health care coverage. If you have Original Medicare, you may enroll in a stand-alone Prescription Drug Plan. If you are considering a Medicare Advantage plan, many MA plans include prescription drug coverage. Check with your plan directly if you need help understanding your policy or coverage.