South Carolina Medicare Supplement Plans
South Carolina Medicare Supplement Plans help bridge the gaps in coverage. Most of the time, Medigap plans cover deductibles, coinsurances, and copayments.
Medicare changes constantly; all the modifications can make following along difficult. We update our content regularly to keep you informed. We understand Medicare is layers of complexity, but it doesn’t have to be.
Below we will discuss all the 2020 South Carolina Medicare information you need to know.
Guide to South Carolina Medicare Supplement Plans for 2020
There are many perks to having a Medicare Supplement Plan in South Carolina. You can go to ANY doctor that takes Medicare, which means less worry about networks and referrals.
The best time to enroll is during the Medicare Supplement Open Enrollment Period. When this happens, you have six months to enroll in a plan.
To make things easier, we’re going to use Betty as an example. Betty is turning 65 in February and wants to find coverage that pays first-dollar because of her extensive health issues.
Well, beginning in 2020, first-dollar coverage plans won’t be available to new beneficiaries. Betty was on Medicare due to disability BEFORE 2020; so, she is eligible for Medigap Plan F.
Understanding Medigap Options in South Carolina
When Betty calls to talk to one of our agents, she goes through a suitability questionnaire; this helps our agent understand the kind of coverage Betty will need for her situation. They discuss location, eligibility, and budget.
Once the discovery portion of the call is complete, Betty and the agent decide Medigap Plan G is more cost-effective because the price difference between Plan F and G is over $250 a year.
The Part B deductible is much less than $250, which means Betty gets almost first-dollar coverage and saves money by paying her deductible.
The savings difference isn’t the same for everyone; some people are genuinely better with Plan F. Just like some people find High Deductible Plan G to be more suitable than the standard option.
The best plan for your neighbor likely isn’t the most suitable option for you.
South Carolina Medicare Supplement Rates
Medigap in Columbia, SC will cost different than a Medicare Supplement in Hilton Head, SC. Prices for supplements vary because there are so many various factors.
When it comes to cost location is the first factor.
For example, when Betty was living in Hilton Head, her premium was a little over $100 a month for Plan G. Then, when she went to Columbia, her cost was a little less than $100 a month.
Age is another factor in the cost of a Medigap plan.
Most of the policies in South Carolina are attained age rated. So, they are cheaper when you buy at age 65, but prices increase as you age.
For example, when Betty turns 70, her premium will be higher than it was at age 69. Medigap Plan G and N have had lower rate increases in previous years; although, making predictions is next to impossible.
Tobacco smokers could pay more by going with particular companies.
Even during the Medicare Supplement Open Enrollment Period with Guarantee Issue rights, companies can choose to charge smokers a higher premium. Of course, this is for obvious reasons.
Choosing the same company as your spouse could save you money.
If you and a spouse are both enrolling, you may qualify for a discount. For example, some carriers offer a 12% discount, and others provide a 7% discount for spouses that choose coverage with the same company.
Working with an agent means you don’t need to memorize all this information, because they already did. Our agents can walk you through everything, from education to enrollment.
South Carolina MedicareSELECT Plans
MedicareSELECT plans are an option for those looking for the superior benefits of Medigap at a more affordable rate. These plans have a network of providers you need to use to get the policy to pay its share.
The big difference between MedigapSELECT and advantage plans is the ability to use Medicare without using plan coverage when out of network. So, instead of paying 100%, you only pay 20% when the doctor takes Original Medicare.
For those on a select plan, if you decide the policy isn’t good enough, at any time, you can return to a regular Medigap plan sold by the same company. The new selection must be equal or lesser coverage than the current policy.
Medicare Advantage Plans in South Carolina
Location is HUGE; the first thing you need to know when searching for a Medicare Advantage plan is the zip code. These plans change from county to county. Then, the policy changes every year during the Annual Enrollment Period.
Medicare Advantage is full of changes; if you want consistent coverage, a Medigap plan could be more suitable. However, if you can’t afford Medigap coverage, advantage plans are an option. According to KFF, over 27% of South Carolina residents enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan in 2019.
Some coverage is always better than no coverage!
There are plenty of $0 plans to choose from throughout South Carolina; however, not all areas offer the same policies or $0 options.
When choosing an Advantage plan, you want to select a policy with good ratings, large doctor networks, and excellent customer service. Unfortunately, there are no 5-star Advantage plans in the state of South Carolina.
Aetna has a Premier Plan with a $0 Premium, and it’s a Preferred Provider Organization (PPO). For those with essential doctors, they don’t want to change; the PPO lets you go outside the plan network at a higher out of pocket cost.
The Aetna Plan has a 4.5-star rating, but the copayments could seriously add up for those with a budget. Outside the network, it’s $50 for the doctor and $60 for a specialist.
If you can stay in-network, the copay is only $5 for the doctor and $40 for the specialist.
The “out of network” copay difference might not seem that big; however, if you need a wheelchair and the supplier is out of network. You can expect to pay 45% of the cost. The costs here are higher than if you only have Medicare.
Of course, this is for Richland County; those in other counties could pay a slightly different amount.
The plan does include Part D and routine vision. What makes this policy better than Medicare is the Maximum Out of Pocket.
The Maximum Out of Pocket is a limit on the amount of money that comes out of your pocket. On this policy, the annual maximum is $5,900.
So, the most you could spend out of your pocket is $5,900 a year. Although many people never reach their maximum.
The thing is, Medicare doesn’t have a max, so if you have a medical catastrophe, you could end up paying tens of thousands of dollars.
Advantage plans can protect you from outrageous costs; however, 90% of Medigap patients are happy about the high-quality care and predictable expenses.
While the choice is yours, if you can afford it, Medigap is superior coverage.
Medicare Part D South Carolina
Those with a Medigap policy will need a stand-alone Part D plan. However, most people with Advantage plans have Part D rolled into the coverage.
For Betty, she takes a plethora of medications, so having a quality Part D policy is crucial to her. Although some people only take a few generic drugs.
For those with a few generics, the Humana Walmart Value Rx Plan is less than $15, and the deductible only applies to brand name medications.
Betty found that the Cigna plan with a $55 premium and $100 deductible made the most sense for her; however, the best policy for her isn’t necessarily the best plan for you.
To find your plan match, contact one of our agents.
State Medicare Resources
The state SHIP program is the South Carolina Department on Aging can help people find assistance, transportation, and other services. Those with a low income should apply for extra help.
There are different levels of Qualified Medicare Beneficiaries when you don’t qualify for Medicaid; it doesn’t mean you don’t qualify for some help.
Those that are eligible for Medicare and Medicaid could benefit from a Dual Eligible-Special Needs Plan. When you qualify for extra help, you can get help paying for prescriptions and sometimes the premiums.
Also, when you qualify for extra help, you get a Part D late enrollment penalty waiver.
Medicare Q&As in South Carolina
Can I get a Medicare Supplement Plan if I’m under 65 in South Carolina?
Those on Medicare due to disability could find a reduction in financial burden by choosing a Medicare Advantage Special Needs Plan.
There are some counties in South Carolina with this option, including a Diabetes and Heart policy with Humana in Greenville County and Anderson County. Then, United Healthcare has a Chronic Condition Special Needs Plan available in over 50 South Carolina counties!
These are great options for those on disability and looking for extra coverage.
Who is Eligible for Medicare in South Carolina?
South Carolina Medicare is available to citizens and permanent residents of at least five consecutive years age 65 or older. Some people qualify due to disability or End-Stage Renal Disease.
To apply, contact Social Security. You can apply online, over the phone, or in the local Social Security office.
Which Medicare Insurance Plans Offer SilverSneakers in South Carolina?
Aetna, Humana, and UnitedHealthcare have Medicare Advantage plans that include SilverSneakers or offer it as an add-on benefit. While SilverSneakers isn’t available with all policies, there are other options.
Anyone who enrolls in coverage through our company will get a link to join in Active and Fit. With the Active & Fit program, you get access to thousands of gyms across the nation, over 800 on-demand workouts, and no long-term contracts.
Compare Medicare Supplement Plans in South Carolina
Do you find this information overwhelming? Perhaps you still feel unsure of the type of policy you want or need?
Don’t worry; our agents are here to walk you through EVERYTHING! We help people just like you every day find their policy match, let us help you too!
It’s simple, call the number above today, and you’ll be on the phone with an expert. Our agents can answer your questions and guide you through enrollment.
Then, once you have an active policy through our company, any time you have a question or concern, our client care team is a phone call away!
For those on a tight schedule or reading this late at night, fill out an online rate form and an agent will contact you about the best plan options in your county.