Medicare Supplement Plans (Medigap)
Medicare Part A and Part B provide seniors and disabled Americans comprehensive coverage for most health care needs.
But Part A and Part B don’t cover everything. Beneficiaries are usually stuck with coinsurance charges for hospital and skilled nursing care. They'll also have to meet an annual deductible.
If you want to avoid these gaps in coverage, it's smart to enroll in a Medicare Supplement plan.
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How Medicare Supplement Works
Medicare Supplement plans — also known as "Medigap" plans — are purchased through private insurance companies. You'll be responsible for monthly premiums with supplemental Medicare coverage.
The best time to enroll in a Medicare Supplement plan is during your open enrollment period. In this enrollment period, insurers can't set your premiums based on pre-existing conditions or health status, and are required to accept your application for coverage.
Open enrollment for Medigap plans starts the day you're enrolled in Medicare Part B, as long as you're over 65 years old. The period lasts for 6 months after that.
The Medicare Supplement Plan Options
There are 12 separate Medigap plans all providing different levels of coverage. They're labeled "A" through "L" — the A plan offers basic benefits and the J plan offers the most complete coverage. The K and L plans pay a percentage of certain copayments and coinsurance charges.
So what kinds of costs does Medigap cover?
- Part A coinsurance charges for hospital services
- Some Part B coinsurance and copayments
- Skilled nursing care coinsurance
- Part A and Part B deductibles
Medicare Supplement plans covered prescription drugs in the past. But because Medicare Part D was created, supplement plans now typically do not provide drug coverage.
Regardless of the plan you choose, every Medigap plan is required by federal law to cover certain health care services. It's up to individual states if they want to require the coverage of additional benefits. But keep in mind that not every state offers all 10 supplemental plans.
The cost of Medicare Supplement plans can also vary by insurance company. That's why it's best to compare multiple options to find the right price for your budget.
To explore your options, talk with a licensed agent in your area for expert advice. With our online service you'll be able to compare competitive quotes from multiple agents. Fill out one simple form, and you’ll be contacted by agents ready to help you find your Medicare Supplement plan.
All our services at Go Health Insurance are no-risk, no-obligation, and absolutely free.