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Medicare Supplement Plans
Medicare Supplements cover what Original Medicare does not. Also known as Medigap plans, Medicare Supplements fill the gaps between what Medicare pays for your full health care costs. These gaps include copayments, deductibles, and coinsurance.
For example, Medicare Part B (medical insurance) covers 80% of your costs. Without a Medigap plan, you are responsible for the remaining 20% out-of-pocket.
What are Medicare Supplement Plans
Medicare Supplement plans are secondary insurance policies that cover costs left unpaid by Medicare Parts A and B. This means that healthcare providers bill Medicare first, and charge the remaining amount to the Medigap plan.
It is important to remember that as long as a doctor accepts Medicare, they will always accept a Medigap plan.
Medicare Supplement plans are different from Medicare Advantage plans, which are also known as Part C.
How Do Medicare Supplement Plans Work
Medicare Supplement plans are standardized by the federal government, meaning the benefits for each plan are consistent across carriers. For example, if you sign up for Plan G through Aetna, you will receive the same benefits as your friend in another state who signed up for Plan G through Mutual of Omaha.
Before you begin to compare Medigap plans, it’s helpful to familiarize yourself with the pricing methods used by carriers. The method used can affect your rates and how they increase over time.
It is important to note that if you have a Medigap policy and your spouse needs Medicare Supplemental coverage as well, they must buy a separate policy.
What Determines Your Medicare Supplement Premium?
It’s important to note that prices and premiums vary by the insurance company, as well as by state. The same plan may cost more in one state than another. Depending on the letter plan you choose, the average premium can range between $50-$300. Beneficiaries should take their time when selecting a policy.
Several factors can affect your initial Medicare Supplement rate quotes. This is why it is critical to speak to a licensed agent when choosing the right Medigap plan for you.
Do I Need a Medicare Supplement Plan?
If you are Medicare-eligible, you can sign up for a Medigap plan once you have Parts A and B. You are Medicare-eligible if you have reached age 65, have collected SSDI benefits for at least two years, or have been diagnosed with ESRD or ALS.
The best time to enroll in a Medigap plan is during your Medicare Supplement Open Enrollment Period. This enrollment period lasts six months and begins with your Part B effective date.
When you enroll in a Medigap plan during this time, you have guaranteed issue rights, meaning an insurance company can’t refuse to sell you a Medigap plan. You can enroll in any Medigap plan, with any carrier, and you won’t need to answer any health questions.
You can enroll in a Medigap plan at any time after this period, but you might not have guaranteed issue rights. This also applies if you plan to change Medigap plans. If you enroll with guaranteed issue rights, coverage for pre-existing conditions can begin immediately. If you no longer have guaranteed issue rights, you’ll have to go through underwriting eligibility questions and could be denied entry to a plan based on pre-existing health conditions.
Below are some benefits included by Medicare Supplement plans, as well as some that are not covered.
What Benefits Do Medicare Supplement Plans Cover?
- Remaining 20% of your Part B medical costs after Medicare pays
- Coverage for Part A coinsurance and hospital costs up to an additional 365 days after benefits
- Part B coinsurance and copayments
- Any hospice care coinsurance and copayments
- First three pints of blood each year
Benefits Some Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans Will Include
- Part A deductible
- Part B deductible
- Excess charges
- Foreign travel emergency care
- Coinsurance for skilled nursing facility care
What Don’t Medicare Supplement Plans Cover?
- Routine vision care
- Routing dental care
- Prescription drugs
- Private-duty nursing
- Long-term care
- Hearing Aids
If you need any of the above, a Part D prescription drug plan or a dental, vision, or hearing plan, could be beneficial for you to add.
List of Medicare Supplement Plans
What Companies Sell Medicare Supplements?
Many carriers sell Medicare Supplements. Some of these companies include UnitedHealthcare, Cigna, Humana, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Aetna, Mutual of Omaha, Anthem, Central States Indemnity, and many more.
How to Get Help Choosing a Medicare Supplement Plan
If you’re planning to add Medicare Supplement coverage, or any other type os supplemental Medicare coverage, give us a call at the number above or fill out our online rate form.
Our agents will collect some information so we can provide you with the most accurate rate quote on all your supplemental options. Our services are 100% free to you. In addition, when you enroll through us you have unlimited access to our Client Care Team.