There are nearly 6,600,000 Medicare beneficiaries in California presently. Of these beneficiaries, a portion is enrolled in every aspect of Medicare, and some are only enrolled in a few. We’ll give you a basic overview below, including the different supplemental plans available to Californians.

California Original Medicare Insurance for 2024

  • Roughly 2,838,000 people are enrolled in both Part A & Part B
  • 2,451,000 aged into Medicare, and the other 387,000 became eligible due to a disability
  • There are about 2,586,000 Medicare beneficiaries in California who are enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan
  • There are a little more than 2,226,000 Californians enrolled in a Medicare Part D prescription drug plan

Medicare Costs in California

Part A and Part B are known as Original Medicare, and their costs are set at the federal level. But what does each cover? Part A is your inpatient (or hospital) coverage.

Those with a minimum 10-year employment history (or 40 quarters) are eligible to enroll in Part A for free once they turn 65.

Part B is your outpatient coverage and has a standard monthly premium. Part B covers expenses that are outside of a hospital setting. Some services include flu shots, medical supplies, yearly medical exams, and outpatient treatments.

Part B will see its largest single-year increase in the program’s history.

Medicare Part A Costs in 2023 Medicare Part B Costs in 2023
  • Part A is premium-free for most
  • Part A deductible is $1,600 per benefit period
  • Inpatient hospital stay days 61-90 is $400
  • The standard Part B premium is $164.90
  • The annual deductible for Part B is $226
  • Medicare pays 80%, you pay 20% out-of-pocket

Original Medicare Coverage for Californians

Just over 3,400,000 beneficiaries in California are enrolled in Part A. There are another 2,966,000 enrolled in Part B. Just over 387,000 enrolled due to a disability, the remaining aged in.

Medicare Part A (Hospital Coverage)

  • Inpatient care in hospitals
  • Skilled nursing facility care
  • Hospice care
  • Home health care
Medicare Part B (Medical Insurance)

  • Services from doctors and health providers
  • Outpatient care
  • Home health care
  • Durable medical equipment
  • Some preventive services

Medicare Supplemental Plans in California

Healthcare costs have continued to rise steadily in the past several years, and residents of California aren’t immune to these increased costs.

While there is no way to completely stop this rise, doing your due diligence by searching for the most affordable and comprehensive healthcare coverage to supplement Medicare can prevent shelling out many dollars.

When it comes to Medicare, this can be somewhat complicated. Luckily there are a few different options when attempting to supplement Original Medicare.

One such choice for Californians is purchasing a Medicare Supplemental plan, which is attractive because of its standardization, ease of use, and comprehension compared with other insurance offerings.

Private companies can extend benefits to their customers that Medicare Part A & B don’t for a small monthly premium.

These Medigap plans work with the government to ensure you pay an affordable price for the care received. This also affects Californians who enroll in a Medigap plan if they enter a Part D prescription drug plan to pay for their medications.

For those on a limited income in California, it might be a better choice to enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan. Some Part C plans will also include prescription drug coverage.

Medicare Resources for California Residents

Medicare beneficiaries in California also have a few resources available to them. One is the Office of Medicare Innovation and Integration (OMII), which the Department of Health Care Services runs.

Other state resources include the Health Insurance Counseling & Advocacy Program. (HICAP) If you’re looking for assistance in enrolling in a supplemental Medicare plan, we’re here to help!

Cities in California with Estimated Premiums for Medicare Supplemental Coverage

While there are many cities throughout the Golden State, these extensive areas have charts you can look at to see estimated premiums for Medigap coverage:


What parts of Medicare are covered in California?

Parts A & B for Medicare are standardized by the federal government in every state, including California. Part A covers your inpatient services, Part B covers your outpatient services, & Part dD covers your prescription drugs.

What are the three criteria for Medicare eligibility in California?

It’s the same as any state since it’s federally mandated. But the 3 criteria to receive Medicare that must be met are:

  1. Must be a U.S. citizen or a permanent legal resident who’s been in the U.S. for 5 years
  2. Have to be 65 years of age or older
  3. Worked 10 years with a valid employment history (or accumulated 40 quarters of employment credits)

There is technically a 4th criterion that is dealt with on a case-by-case basis. You can be younger than 65 and receive Medicare if you are disabled or have another qualifying medical condition.

What is the difference between Medi-Cal and Medicare in California?

Medi-Cal is California’s state-run version of Medicaid, which allows low-income individuals or families to receive comprehensive health care. But unlike Medicare, Medi-Cal isn’t just for beneficiaries or those who are disabled; it covers pregnant women and children.

How to Sign Up for Supplemental Medicare in California

Navigating Medicare by yourself can be complicated. As a result, you can gain an advantage in this process by having a licensed agent assist you. The best part for you? The services are free! All you have to do is give us a call or complete our rate form to receive rates in your area.

Written By:
Picture of the author
Lindsay Malzone, Lindsay Malzone is the Medicare editor for She's been contributing to many well-known publications since 2017. Her passion is educating Medicare beneficiaries on all their supplemental Medicare options so they can make an informed decision on their healthcare coverage.
Reviewed By:
Picture of the expert
Rodolfo Marrero, Rodolfo Marrero is one of the co-founders at He has been helping consumers find the right coverage since the site was founded in 2013. Rodolfo is a licensed insurance agent that works hand-in-hand with the team to ensure the accuracy of the content.