It seems like Medicare has been around forever, but actually, President Lyndon Baines Johnson called on the Congress to create Medicare in 1964 and signed the bill creating it on July 30, 1965. Medicare services began July 1, 1966 when more than 19 million Americans 65 and older enrolled in the program.
Basically, the traditional (or original) Medicare is a health insurance program and has deductibles and copayments. Medicare was not established to pay all the health care costs of participants. Routine vision and hearing care are not covered by traditional Medicare.
Components of traditional Medicare consist of three parts:
Participants enrolled in traditional Medicare may use services from health care providers who accept Medicare.
Medicare Advantage (also known as Medicare Part C plan) offers a variety of plans offering managed care options, or coordinated care options. These plans are offered by private insurers and health care organizations contracted with Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).
Individuals are eligible to enroll for Medicare coverage the first day of the month in which they turn 65. They are eligible the month before they turn 65 if their birthday is on the first of the month. Medicare eligibility is tied to Social Security benefits. Individuals must be eligible for Social Security to be eligible for Medicare.
Additional information can be found at official Medicare website.