The Difference between Medicare and Medicaid is really about who is involved. Medicare is a Federally sponsored health plan while Medicaid is a Federal and State sponsored Health Plan. Medicare is available for qualifying people who are aged 65 or older or those people who have suffered a qualifying disability for more than 24 months. Medicaid is available to people who have limited income and limited resource.
Those people may be children, women who are pregnant, seniors with low incomes, parents, and people with disabilities. In some cases, an individual may be eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid. When that happens Medicare is the primary payer and Medicaid helps to cover medical expenses after Medicare has paid. Note: Rules differ from State to State about qualification for Medicaid and dual beneficiaries.