Medicare Supplement insurance (Also known as Medigap, or Medicare Supplemental insurance) are private health insurance plans offered by several companies to work in conjunction with Medicare Part and Part B. They help pay for some, or all of the medical expenses that those parts cover. A Medicare Part F, or Plan F, pays 100 percent of all deductibles, coinsurance, and co-payments.
The word Medigap refers to pay the “gaps”, or expenses in Part A and Part B. Nearly 20 percent of all Medicare beneficiaries in the United States have a Medicare Supplement policy, and this number is expected to rise greatly as more and more people turn age 65.
Who is Eligible
You must be enrolled in both Part A and Part B Medicare to qualify to get approved into a supplemental plan. Anyone enrolling in a plan within 6 months of their Part B effective date will be considered in their Open Enrollment period. This period lasts for 6 months from that date and allows people to enroll ina plan such as a Medicare Part F and not have to go through medical underwriting. Therefore, all pre-existing conditions are allowed with no up-charge on the monthly premiums.
Only one person at a time may have a supplement policy, therefore each family member would need to apply individually. Medigap insurance does not cover items such as dental, hearing, or vision coverage.
For anyone under the age of 65, state laws vary as to what policies are available and which plans are offered. Insurance carriers are not required to offer coverage to these individuals, who would only qualify for Medicare if they were on Social Security disability for at least 24 months.
Other Plans That Are Available
Although Plan F is the most popular plan available due to its outstanding coverage, this doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the best option for everyone. With great coverage comes a price, and especially for very healthy people or those on a limited budget Medicare Plan F might be too much extra money, for too limited extra benefits.
While Plan F is the most comprehensive plan available (remember 100 percent coverage of the gaps), Medicare Supplement Plan G comes in a very close second in terms of popularity and very good benefits. In fact Plan G is identical to Plan F other than one small difference, and that is who pays the Medicare Part B deductible.
Prior to Medicare paying anything each year in terms of doctor’s services coverage, someone has to pay the first Part B deductible. This is based on each calendar year, therefore the first $150 (On average, this deductible changes each year slightly) must be paid by the beneficiary. With a Medicare Part F, the plan pays this deductible for you. On a Plan G, you must pay this deductible out-of-pocket.
While it’s nice to have everything technically “paid” for you, in reality you’re still paying it yourself on a Plan F because your monthly premiums are higher than Plan G. In most cases, you total yearly premiums on Plan F will actually be over $150 higher than those of a Plan G. This means you’ll likely pay the insurance company extra to pay this deductible for you. Some consider it a service fee for them to write a check with your money.
Why You Need To Check Rates On Both Plans
If you’re the type of person who simply likes to have all of your medical bills paid for you, and don’t mind the cost then Plan F just might be the best way to go. For those of us who love to save money, it’s absolutely necessary to investigate the different rates for both Plan F and G, from multiple companies.
This is because all insurance carriers have the exact same benefits within each plan letter. There is no better Plan F with one company to another, they’re all the same. That being said, they all have different monthly premiums for the exact same coverage. If you do not check rates from multiple companies you will likely find out later that you could have saved money just by shopping around, or allowing an agent to help you.
Using an Independent Agent
Many people starting the process of looking for supplemental insurance for Medicare will begin researching on their own. This is a great idea, because you must learn about the coverage you are getting prior to making an informed decision. That being said, there is absolutely no reason why you shouldn’t use the help of an experienced, independent agent to guide you through the Medicare maze.
We’ve helped thousands of people with their supplemental insurance, at absolutely No-cost. Our agents will show you the many different options available in your area and answer any questions you might have. You pay nothing extra to have us help you, and we offer FREE, no-hassle consultations. Why go it alone when you can get expert help for free?
Remember, whether you’re shopping for a Medicare Part F or a Plan G, you must get rates from all the top carriers in your area to help save the most money.
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