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Medicare Supplement Plans in Iowa

Summary: There are many Medicare Supplement plans Iowa residents can enroll in that take care of the costs left behind by Original Medicare benefits. Iowa Medicare Supplement plans help you save on expenses for the healthcare services you deserve through affordable coverage. Estimated Read Time: 14 mins

Table of Contents:

  1. Best Medicare Supplement Plans in Iowa for 2024
  2. Who Is Eligible for a Medicare Supplement Plan in Iowa?
  3. Cost of Medicare Supplement Plans in Iowa
  4. Companies Offering Medicare Supplement Plans in Iowa
  5. Medicare Supplement Plans In Iowa for Under 65 and Disabled
  6. Medigap Rating Method in Iowa
  7. Medigap Guaranteed Issue Protections in Iowa
  8. When to Enroll in Medicare Supplement Plans in Iowa
  9. Does Iowa Allow Medicare Excess Charges?
  10. Additional Medicare Insurance Options in Iowa

Medicare Supplement plans in Iowa can help you relieve out-of-pocket costs for healthcare services after Original Medicare (Medicare Part A and Part B) covers its portion.

There are ten standardized Iowa Medicare Supplement plans and two high-deductible plans available for you to enroll in. Each Medicare Supplement plan is identified by letters A-N. The benefits for each letter plan are the same between carriers. This is because all Medicare Supplement plans in Iowa are standardized by the federal government.

Additionally, Iowa Medigap plans are accepted by any physician who accepts Original Medicare regardless of the carrier you enroll in. Unlike other insurance plans you may be familiar with, Iowa Medicare Supplement plans have no networks and will never require you to have a referral when seeing a specialist.

Below we review Medicare Supplement plans in Iowa and help you decide which Medigap plan might be right for you.

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Best Medicare Supplement Plans in Iowa

When it comes to the best Medicare Supplement plans in Iowa, this will vary according to your healthcare and budget needs. However, out of all of the Medicare Supplement plans Iowa residents have available, these three are the most popular:

  • Medicare Supplement Plan F Iowa
  • Medicare Supplement Plan G Iowa
  • Medicare Supplement Plan N Iowa

These three Iowa Medicare Supplement plans offer a great range of benefits for their price point, as well as options to consider for maintaining a low premium without sacrificing too many benefits. The chart below helps break down each of the most popular options for Medicare supplement Iowa insurance companies have to offer:

Medicare Supplement Plan F vs G vs N Comparison

Medicare Supplement Plan F Iowa

When you enroll in Medicare Supplement Plan F in Iowa, you’ll receive 100% coverage for all the costs left behind by Original Medicare. You will never pay a copayment, deductible, or coinsurance for any Medicare-covered services, regardless of the cost.

Unfortunately, not all Medicare enrollees in Iowa are eligible for this high-rated plan. To be eligible for Medigap Plan F in Iowa, you must have been eligible for Original Medicare before January 1, 2020. This is the cutoff date for Medicare Supplement Plan F Iowa eligibility. If you enrolled in Original Medicare before this date, you could enroll in Medicare Supplement Plan F in Iowa at any time.

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Medicare Supplement Plan G Iowa

Medicare Supplement Plan G Iowa is the next most comprehensive plan on the list. Medigap Plan G in Iowa only requires you to cover the Medicare Part B deductible. Once your deductible is met, you are covered at 100% for the remainder of the calendar year. This plan requires no copayments or coinsurance.

Medicare Supplement Plan N Iowa

Medicare Supplement Plan N Iowa is the least comprehensive available out of the three most popular coverage options in Iowa but also the least expensive of the three plans. When you enroll in Medigap Plan N in Iowa, you will pay your Medicare Part B deductible, $20 copayments at the doctor or specialist, $50 copayments at the Emergency Room (if not admitted), and Medicare Part B excess charges if applicable by the doctor and state you receive services in.

Who Is Eligible for a Medicare Supplement Plan in Iowa?

To be eligible for a Medicare Supplement plan in Iowa, first, you must have Medicare Part A and Medicare Part B and be a resident of the state of Iowa. The best time to enroll in a plan is during your Medicare Supplement Open Enrollment Period. This enrollment period begins on your Medicare Part B start date and ends six months later. However, most carriers allow you to begin the enrollment process up to six months before your Medicare Part B is active.

When you enroll in Medicare Supplement during this enrollment period, you avoid the hassle of Medicare Supplement underwriting questions. This means that you cannot be denied a plan regardless of your pre-existing conditions. This applies when enrolling in a Medicare Supplement plan in Iowa or other states.

You can enroll in Medigap Iowa benefits throughout the year once your Medicare Supplement Open Enrollment Period is over. However, unless you have guaranteed issue rights, you will need to go through underwriting, and your policy could be denied based on your health.

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Cost of Medicare Supplement Plans in Iowa

The cost of Medicare Supplement plans in Iowa depends on several factors. The earlier you enroll, the lower your premium. Your gender, ZIP Code, and tobacco-use status are also major factors that can impact your premium.

Below is an example of the premium range for a 65-year-old female and male in a highly populated Iowa ZIP Code.

Female, No Tobacco, Iowa ZIP Code 52240
Medigap Plan Monthly Premium Age 65 Monthly Premium Age 75
Medicare Supplement Plan F $104-$439* $129-$439*
Medicare Supplement Plan G $87-$381 $103-$381
Medicare Supplement Plan N $67-$300 $83-$300
Male, No Tobacco, Iowa ZIP Code 52240
Medigap Plan Monthly Premium Age 65 Monthly Premium Age 75
Medicare Supplement Plan F $119-$496* $146-$496*
Medicare Supplement Plan G $99-$430 $119-$430
Medicare Supplement Plan N $73-$339 $92-$339

*If on Medicare before 01/01/2020

Keep in mind the chart above is just an example of the premium range, and your actual costs may vary.

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Companies Offering Medicare Supplement Plans in Iowa

Iowa Medicare supplement benefits are available from many different companies, and who you enroll with can affect how much you pay as well as your overall customer experience. Although the benefits of each lettered Iowa Medigap plan are the same, premiums vary from company to company. Therefore, you’ll want to compare carriers before signing up.

Furthermore, you’ll note that while it’s important to compare premiums, you’ll also want to be sure that your carrier is there for you when you need them. Independent credit agencies, such as A.M. Best and Standard and Poor (S&P), help consumers understand the financial strength of each carrier. The Better Business Bureau (BBB) is a renowned agency for measuring the level of customer service you’ll experience from brand to brand.

By reviewing these metrics, you can better understand which company is best for your healthcare coverage. Below are several top-rated Medicare Supplement Iowa companies available:

Compare Iowa Medicare Supplement Carriers
Carrier BBB Rating S&P Rating A.M. Best Rating
Wellmark/Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Iowa A+ A+ (Superior) A
Cigna N/A A- A (Excellent)
Mutual of Omaha A+ A+ A+ (Superior)
Manhattan Life A+ A B++
United American A+ AA- (Very Strong) A (Excellent)

Please note that there are several companies offering Iowa Medicare Supplement plans, and this is not a complete list. Your best bet is to work with a licensed Medicare agent to discuss the options in your area and compare benefits and premiums.

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Medicare Supplement Plans In Iowa for Under 65 and Disabled

Not all states require insurance companies to offer benefits to disabled persons under the age of 65, and this includes Iowa Medicare Supplement plans. But that does not mean that Iowa Medigap plans are not available for those under 65 and disabled. Some carriers may offer Medicare Supplement plans that Iowa disabled residents can enroll in, but your options are limited, and you’ll most likely have to enroll at a much higher premium rate.

An alternative to a Medicare Supplement plan in Iowa for those eligible for Original Medicare benefits due to disability is a Medicare Part C (Medicare Advantage) plan. Enrolling in Medicare Part C while you are under 65 is often more cost-effective. However, once you turn 65, your rate will drop to that of a 65-year-old. At this time, you can switch to a Medicare Supplement plan with no underwriting.

Medigap Rating Method in Iowa

Several factors come into play when deciding your premium. One of these factors is the Medigap rating methods used in Iowa. There are three possible Medicare Supplement rating methods that your plan may use. This is left up to each carrier, but the method will affect how much you’ll pay for coverage. Here’s how each of the Medigap rating methods in Iowa work:

  • Community-rated plans don’t take into consideration your age when calculating your premium. Everyone pays the same regardless of their age.
  • Issue-age plans allow you to enroll without age playing a role in how much you pay in premiums. However, operational costs, inflation, and other factors will raise your premium as time goes on.
  • Attained-age policies often provide the lowest premiums for those enrolling at the age of 65. But these premiums will increase as you age. Inflation and other outside factors can also contribute to rates rising over time.

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Medigap Guaranteed Issue Protections in Iowa

Your Medicare Supplement Open Enrollment Period lets you sign up for Iowa Medigap plans without facing underwriting questions. However, outside of this period, you are likely to face medical underwriting questions causing you to pay more for your premiums or be denied coverage altogether. But guaranteed issue protections provide specific scenarios in which you can avoid underwriting.

In the Hawkeye State, residents have seven different scenarios in which guaranteed issue protections, also known as guaranteed issue rights, are provided. These qualifying life events allow you to enroll in Medicare Supplement plans in Iowa without being denied coverage.

Below are the different scenarios that provide you with guaranteed issue rights. Please note that because of enrollment restraints, if you are not eligible for Iowa Medicare Supplement Plans C or F, your guaranteed issue protection will apply to Plans D and G, respectively:

Scenario 1:

If you enroll in Medicare Advantage but end up moving where the Medicare Advantage plan isn’t providing benefits or is leaving Medicare completely, you can enroll in Iowa Medicare Supplement Plans A, B, C, D, F, G, K, or L. If you are switching to another Medicare Advantage plan, your guaranteed issue right is not provided as you cannot have this coverage and an Iowa Medigap plan at the same time.

Scenario 2:

You’ll receive guaranteed issue rights when you have Medicare Parts A and B as well as an employer group health plan, retiree coverage, COBRA, or coverage from your Union that covers healthcare after our Original Medicare benefits, but the coverage will end. You may even have additional rights under this scenario, and you can enroll in Iowa Medicare Supplement Plans A, B, C, D, F, G, K, or L.

Scenario 3:

Iowans enrolled in a Medicare SELECT can receive guaranteed issue rights when moving to an area that isn’t covered by their SELECT benefits, and they are enrolled in Original Medicare. In this case, enrolling in Iowa Medicare Supplement Plans A, B, C, D, F, G, K, or L is allowed.

Scenario 4:

If it’s your first year having a Medicare Advantage plan or PACE (Program of All‑inclusive Care for the Elderly) and you are 65 years old, you can switch to any of the Medicare Supplement plans Iowa carriers have to offer, so long as you are eligible. This is known as your trial right.

Scenario 5:

In addition to the previous scenario, there is another that provides beneficiaries with a trial right. This occurs when you drop an Iowa Medigap plan for coverage in either a Medicare Advantage plan or Medicare SELECT coverage and drop them to enroll back into a Medigap plan in Iowa. So long as this is your first time and it’s within a year of enrolling in coverage, you can switch back. This trial right is available for Iowa Medicare Supplement Plans A, B, C, D, F, G, K, or L.

Scenario 6:

If you’re enrolled in one of the Medicare Supplement plans Iowa carriers have to offer, lose your coverage through no fault of your own, or your carrier ends up declaring bankruptcy, you’ll be granted guaranteed issue protection. In this case, you can enroll in Iowa Medigap Plans A, B, C, D, F, G, K, or L.

Scenario 7:

When Medicare Supplement plans in Iowa come from companies that break the rules meant to protect you and other beneficiaries, you can be provided a guaranteed issue right. This also applies if you are misled while undergoing enrollment. You can either leave your Medicare Advantage coverage, or any of the Medicare Supplement plans Iowa beneficiaries can enroll in. Your guaranteed issue protection allows you to enroll in Iowa Medicare Supplement Plans A, B, C, D, F, G, K, or L.

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When to Enroll in Medicare Supplement Plans in Iowa

The best time for you to enroll in Medicare Supplement Iowa coverage is as soon as you become eligible for Medicare Part A and Part B benefits. By enrolling as soon as you are eligible, not only do you gain the benefits of your coverage sooner, but you’ll also avoid medical underwriting questions and receive lower premiums in the process.

It’s important to note that residents of Iowa have a 30-day free look period when signing up for coverage. Therefore, if you enroll in an Iowa Medigap plan and don’t like it within that timeframe, you can return the policy and receive a refund. This is an important factor that provides you with the opportunity to enroll in Medigap plans in Iowa without really taking on any risk.

Does Iowa Allow Medicare Excess Charges?

In Iowa, doctors and hospitals are allowed to charge Medicare excess charges. This means that if your doctor does not accept the Medicare-approved cost for service in Iowa, they can charge up to a 15% surcharge for the service that you will be responsible for covering.

While these charges are allowed in Iowa, they are not common. In fact, 98% of doctors who accept Medicare also accept Medicare Assignment. Medicare Assignment is the Medicare-approved cost for a service.

To avoid these charges, it is important to have a conversation with your doctor before having any major surgeries or procedures to avoid any unexpected costs.

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Additional Medicare Insurance Options in Iowa

Medigap plans in Iowa, by far, provide the most comprehensive benefits when it comes to networks, coverage, and cost. However, there are additional plans that can elevate your healthcare benefits.

Enrolling in a Medicare Part D plan, regardless of if you have an Iowa Medicare Supplement plan, is always a good idea. Enrolling in a plan as soon as you are eligible will help to avoid the Medicare Part D late enrollment penalty and to receive benefits for prescription drugs.

Additionally, dental, vision, and hearing plans are available in the Hawkeye State to provide you with these additional benefits that Original Medicare does not cover.

If you decide that a Medicare Supplement plan is not right for you, Iowa also offers Medicare Advantage plans to beneficiaries looking for Medicare coverage with low monthly payments and higher out-of-pocket costs when you receive healthcare services.

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How to Apply for Medicare Supplement Plans in Iowa

If you are interested in enrolling in a Medicare Supplement plan in Iowa, we are here to help. At MedicareFAQ we have a fully staffed team of licensed Medicare agents who always have your best interests in mind. We work with all the top carriers to bring you the best plan for your needs, regardless of plan type or carrier. We take the hassle out of finding the right plan.

To receive your free side by side plan comparison, complete our online rate form today or give us a call at the number listed above.

Kayla Hopkins

Kayla Hopkins

Content Editor
Kayla Hopkins is an accomplished writer and Medicare guru serving as the Editor of MedicareFAQ.com. Upon completing her Communications degree from Ohio University, Kayla dedicated her time to understanding the ever-evolving landscape of healthcare. With her extensive background as a Licensed Insurance Agent, she brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to her writing.
Ashlee Zareczny

Ashlee Zareczny

Compliance Manager
Ashlee Zareczny is the Compliance Manager for MedicareFAQ. As a licensed Medicare agent in all 50 states, she is dedicated to educating those eligible for Medicare by providing the necessary resources and tools. Additionally, Ashlee trains new and tenured Medicare agents on CMS compliance guidelines. Ashlee is a Medicare expert who specializes in Medicare Supplement, Medicare Advantage, and Medicare Part D education.

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