Medicare Supplemental Insurance Plans

Medicare is an insurance program offered by the federal government that helps to pay for some healthcare costs when you reach 65. Medicare Supplemental Plans (also called Medigap) fill in the gaps of coverage. Medicare Supplemental Insurance Plans policies can be purchased through private insurers. These policies cover Medicare deductibles as well as copayments and other costs. These policies are regulated by state and federal law, which means that the standardized plans (plans A through N) must have the same benefits across the nation, but premiums can vary between providers. These policies are meant to be used in conjunction with Original Medicare Parts A and B, as well as a prescription drug plan (Medicare Part D). Medicare Advantage plans and these policies are not the same. They cannot cover the gaps that Medicare Supplement plans can.

Standardized Medicare Supplemental Insurance Plans

Private insurance companies sell 10 standardized Medicare Supplements, each identified by the letters A to N. During your once-off open enrollment period, any Medicare Supplemental insurance plan can be purchased. You will not need to undergo medical underwriting. This is an underwriting process which requires you to provide your medical history. The cost may be higher.

Plans F and G are designed to cover any gaps in coverage between your Medicare Part A and Medicare B deductibles and the first three month of coverage following enrollment. Plans F & G also pay some of the excess physician charges that Medicare doesn’t pay – up 15% above the Medicare approved amount.

Plan A is a basic insurance plan and has the lowest premium. Plans C through N offer similar benefits. Plan F is only available to those who enrolled in Medicare prior to January 1, 2020.

When choosing a health plan, take into account your current and potential future needs. Your health is likely to change over the years. It’s crucial to find a plan that works for you long-term and is affordable during retirement. You’ll pay more as you age so it’s better to pick a plan that suits your budget. Some supplemental insurance policies offer additional benefits, such as vision and dental coverage or travel benefits. You can purchase a Medicare Part D Drug Plan that has its own supplemental premium.

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