Skilled nursing facility (SNF) care

Medicare Part A (Hospital Insurance) covers skilled nursing facility care  for a limited time (on a short-term basis) if all of these conditions apply:

  • You have a  qualifying inpatient hospital stay


    • During the COVID-19 pandemic, some people may be able to get renewed SNF coverage without first having to start a new benefit period. 
    • If you’re not able to be in your home during the COVID-19 pandemic or are otherwise affected by the pandemic, you can get SNF care without a qualifying hospital stay.
  • Your doctor has decided that you need daily skilled care. You must get the care from, or under the supervision of, skilled nursing or therapy staff.
  • You get these skilled services in a Medicare-certified SNF.
  • You need these skilled services for a medical condition that’s either:
    • A hospital-related medical condition. 
    • A condition that started while you were getting care in the SNF for a hospital-related medical condition.

Your costs in Original Medicare

You pay this for each benefit period:

  • Days 1 - 20: $0 coinsurance
  • Days 21 - 100: Up to $200 coinsurance per day
  • Days 101 and beyond: All costs

There's a 100-day limit of Part A SNF coverage in each benefit period.


Your doctor or other health care provider may recommend you get services more often than Medicare covers. Or, they may recommend services that Medicare doesn’t cover. If this happens, you may have to pay some or all of the costs. Ask questions so you understand why your doctor is recommending certain services and if, or how much, Medicare will pay for them.

What it is

Skilled care is nursing and therapy care that can only be safely and effectively performed by, or under the supervision of, professionals or technical personnel. It’s health care given when you need skilled nursing or skilled therapy to treat, manage, and observe your condition, and evaluate your care.

Medicare-covered services in a skilled nursing facility include, but aren't limited to:

Is my test, item, or service covered?