Supplemental Medicare insurance helps many beneficiaries enrolled in Medicare by protecting their finances. While Medicare covers most of your medical care costs, it still leaves many gaps in coverage.
As a result, a growing number of recipients are enrolling in supplemental Medicare insurance for seniors.
Budgeting after retirement can be hard. Even for those working past 65, budgeting is important to prepare you for retirement.
Not having to worry about expensive out of pocket medical costs give you one less major expense to worry about.
Senior supplement insurance is called Medigap insurance, or Medicare Supplement insurance.
Supplemental Medicare Insurance
Supplemental Medicare insurance is essentially secondary health insurance for seniors. With Medicare, you’re responsible for 20% of your outpatient medical costs, as well as costly inpatient deductibles.
Supplemental medical insurance for Medicare covers copayments, coinsurance, as well as deductibles that form costly out of pocket costs.
The cost is based largely on location. Therefore, talking with a licensed insurance agent in your area can save you a pretty penny.
What is Supplemental Health Insurance for Seniors with Medicare
Supplemental insurance for Medicare is health insurance for seniors that fills in the gaps.
When you have help covering the gaps that Medicare leaves you responsible for, you can focus on getting healthy instead of medical expenses.
Without one of these plans, you’re left prone to high out of pocket costs including coinsurance, deductibles as well as copayments.
Supplement insurance for seniors isn’t mandatory. However, these plans will take on the financial burden when Medicare falls short, which it always does.
Every person has a different budget and unique healthcare issues. Shopping around can be difficult; however, talking to a licensed insurance agent can help you determine what plan is best for you.
Example of How Supplemental Health Insurance Protects Your Finances
Eileen has been planning for retirement her entire life. In fact, she already had travel plans in place right after her retirement started. She planned on visiting her daughter and grandchildren that lived out of state.
She thought she had her insurance all set in place and her finances protected from medical expenses. On her second day of driving, she ended up being rear-ended by another driver.
She was rushed to the hospital via ambulance. She ended up staying for a few days. During those days, she had to undergo many different tests & labs. This included x-rays, MRIs, and CT scans.
After Eileen was released from the hospital, she had to schedule follow-up visits with her doctor. Her doctor also had her undergo lab work, x-rays & CT scans for comparison.
Eileen started receiving bills from her hospital stay and follow-up appointments shortly after. She then realized her finances weren’t fully protected from medical expenses.
Eileen Wasn’t as Protected as She Thought
At the time of the accident, she only had Part A & B. Her Part A hospital deductible was $1,420.
Then her Part B outpatient deductible was $197. She also had a 20% coinsurance for all her outpatient services, which includes lab work, x-rays, and CT scans.
Eileen had a total bill that was almost $6,000 between the inpatient deductible, outpatient deductible and 20% coinsurance.
Now, if Eileen has a Medigap plan, most of her bill would be the insurance companies responsibility.
Since Eileen has this huge out of pocket expense, she can’t proceed with her travel plans to see her family.
She must use her travel money to pay for her medical bills.
If she had Plan G, the only out of pocket medical expense she would pay is the outpatient deductible of $197.
The inpatient deductible and 20% coinsurance would go to the supplemental health insurance carrier.
Best Supplemental Health Insurance for Seniors
This depends on each person since everyone has a different budget and needs different benefits. Companies base their premiums on community age, issue age or attained age.
Plan F has the most benefits but also has the highest premiums. Medigap Plan G leaves you responsible for the outpatient deductible, but the premiums are more affordable. Plan N has small copays to make the premiums even less than Plan F and Plan G.
Open Enrollment Period for Supplemental Medicare Insurance
Supplemental Medicare insurance allows you to enroll, dis-enroll and change plans whenever you wish. However, you’ll get the best possible rates when you are first eligible.
When you enroll during your OEP, you don’t have to go through medical insurance underwriting. Even with previous health issues, you get approved for coverage.
The Open Enrollment Period takes place during your first 6-months your Part B is in effect. If Part B is effective on January 1, then your open enrollment window is from January 1st- July 31st.
Depending on the state you live in, changing your plan may be simple. Some states will offer guaranteed issue during your birthday month, like California. This makes changing policies each year simple.
However, most states don’t do this, they instead require you to medically qualify for a new policy. The states that require you to qualify will, at times, have a lower premium because they only approve healthy people.
Supplemental Insurance for Prescriptions Drugs
Part D is an optional choice that you can add to your insurance. Those looking to get the most comprehensive benefits will combine their Part A & Part B with a Medigap plan and a Part D standalone plan.
If you don’t enroll in a Part D plan when you’re first eligible, you’ll have a late enrollment penalty added to your monthly premium for every 12 months you go without it.
Do you Have to Have Supplemental Insurance with Medicare?
No, you don’t have to have supplemental insurance to go with your Medicare. However, since Medicare only covers 80% of your medical costs, it’s you need to protect your finances.
Compare Rates for Supplemental Medical Insurance for Seniors
Don’t overwhelm yourself by trying to compare supplemental Medicare insurance rates yourself.
There are so many carriers and many different letter plans. Having an experienced agent by your side is not only free, but it can also save you money.
Plus, when you sign up for senior supplement health insurance through us, you’re be given limitless support from our Client Care Team.
They provide support not only for claims but for yearly rate comparisons to make sure you always have the best rate.
Compare rates for Medicare insurance for seniors by giving us a call to speak to a licensed agent in your area. If you want to do a comparison online, you can complete our rate form to see rates from the top carriers that are local to you.