North Mississippi Medical Center and Medicare


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Update: North Mississippi Health Services has now partnered with Aetna to create a Cobranded Medicare Advantage plan with enhanced benefits for patients who primarily use the Healthlink network.

North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo, Mississippi is the largest non-metropolitan hospital in the country. It provides care and treatment for over 730,000 individuals in Tupelo and the surrounding areas including NW Alabama and some parts of Tennessee. If you’re on Medicare and need a hospital, you’ll have coverage at North Mississippi Medical Center.

North Mississippi Medical Center and Medicare

Some types of Medicare are not accepted everywhere, so you’ll need to understand what type of Medicare coverage you have before deciding on which doctors and facilities you should seek care from. Fortunately, North Mississippi Medical Center works with many insurance companies.

Let’s start by reviewing your Medicare options and then discuss which ones work best at the hospital in Tupelo, MS.

Traditional Medicare

Every Medicare beneficiary begins by enrolling in Traditional Medicare, which consists of Parts A and B. Part A provides hospital insurance and helps cover your room and board expenses during an inpatient stay. Part B provides outpatient insurance. You’ll use Part B for doctor’s visits, surgeries, durable medical equipment, diagnostic tests, and many preventive services.

You’ve probably heard of insurance networks. Traditional Medicare does not utilize networks. As long as your healthcare physician agrees to accept Medicare assignment (which means they accept the fees set by the Medicare program), you’ll enjoy the full benefits of your Part A and B coverage. On the rare occasion that you may see a provider who does not accept Medicare assignment, you’ll need to pay more out-of-pocket. However, most physicians and facilities in the U.S. accept Medicare, including North Mississippi Medical Center.

Nurses doing rounds in North Mississippi Medical Center
One option is a Medicare supplement, also called a Medigap plan.

Medicare Supplements

Traditional Medicare won’t pick up 100% of your healthcare expenses, so most Medicare beneficiaries choose to enroll in some form of supplemental coverage. One option is a Medicare supplement, also called a Medigap plan. Medigap plans offer comprehensive medical coverage. The three most popular plans, F, G, and N, leave their policyholders with nearly no out-of-pocket expenses. Medicare supplements are a valuable asset.

Another benefit of these plans is that like Traditional Medicare, they do not utilize provider networks. If your physician accepts Medicare, they will also accept your Medigap plan, no matter who your insurance carrier is. That feature makes these plans even more valuable for individuals who travel and may need care far from home.

Medicare Advantage Plans

Here’s where you’ll need to pay attention to the specifics of your plan. If you enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan instead of a Medicare supplement, you’ll likely need to stay within your plan’s network of providers and facilities. Some of the Medicare Advantage plans do not offer coverage outside of the plan’s network, so ignoring this requirement could cost you thousands of dollars.

Being limited to a specific network does not make these plans bad, but you’ll need to be sure you know which physicians are contracted with your plan. This will help you make the most of your benefits. Medicare Advantage plans often come with low monthly premiums because of the provider networks they utilize.

Fortunately, the North Mississippi Medical Center in Tupelo is contracted with two popular Medicare Advantage plans.

Accepted Health Insurance Plans

North Mississippi Medical Center accepts a wide variety of insurance carriers, but we’ll discuss what you need to know about the Medicare options they provide.

First, Parts A and B of Traditional Medicare, as well as all Medicare supplements, are accepted at the hospital in Tupelo.

The two Medicare Advantage plans that are accepted are the plans with Aetna and UnitedHealthcare. These two carriers offer many plan options, most of which are accepted at the hospital.

Before receiving major treatment, you should check that every provider on your care team accepts your specific plan.

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Justin Brock

President & CEO of Bobby Brock Insurance