Medigap Plans (aka Medicare Supplements) are very popular because they help fill the gap where medicare only pays 80%.
Over 93% of those on Medicare Have some sort of Medigap PlanJeff Cline – Founder 1-800-MEDIGAP
Top 20 things people ask their agent about Medigap Plans and Medicare Supplement Plans?
- When is the best time to apply for my Medigap Plan?
- What Medigap Company is the best?
- Do I have to have a Medicare Supplement or Medigap?
- What’s the difference between Medicare Supplement vs Medicare Advantage?
- How do I get Prescription Drug Coverage or Medicare Part D?
- Does the Medigap let me see my same doctors?
- Can I travel with a Medigap Plan?
- How do I save on monthly premiums?
- Why are medicare advantage plans bad?
- Medicare Supplement Plans Cost?
- Medicare Supplement Comparison Chart?
- What is the best Medicare Supplement Insurance plan?
- How do I choose a Medicare Supplement?
- Medigap Open Enrollemnt Period?
- Can I switch between Medicare Advantage and Medigap Plans?
- When do I qualify for NO UNDERWRITING?
- Can I be declined coverage?
- What is Medicare Part C?
- What is a High Deductible Plan?
- Is AARP an Insurance Company or do they just sell medicare Supplements?
- Top 10 Medicare Supplement Insurance Companies
#21: How to save 15% on my medicare Supplement Insurance
When is the best time to apply for my Medigap Plan?
Generally, there is no type of Medicare plan that you can get “any time.” All Medicare coverage, including Medicare Supplement (Medigap) plans, is subject to enrollment periods. Other types of Medicare plans, like Medicare Advantage and Medicare Part D prescription drug plans, have open enrollment periods every year. However, Medicare Supplement open enrollment is more limited.
When can I enroll in a Medicare Supplement plan?
The best time to enroll in a Medicare Supplement plan may be your Medicare Supplement Open Enrollment Period. This period lasts six months and begins the first day of the month in which you are both 65 or older and enrolled in Medicare Part B.
For example, your birthday is August 31, 1953, so you turn 65 in 2018. You can enroll in Medicare Part B three months before your birthday, so you have Medicare Part B in May 2018. However in May 2018, you’re not 65 yet, so you’re not in the Medicare Supplement Open Enrollment Period. The first day of the month that you’re both 65 and older and enrolled in Medicare Part B will be August 1, 2018. Your Medicare Supplement Open Enrollment period would last until February 1, 2019.
The reason the Medicare Supplement Open Enrollment Period is important is that insurance companies that offer Medicare Supplement plans can’t use medical underwriting during this time. Medical underwriting considers your health conditions and the costs to cover you and may reject you based on a health problem. During you Medicare Supplement open enrollment period, you could possibly have any health problem and still be accepted into a Medicare Supplement plan.
If you apply for Medicare Supplement after your Medicare Supplement Open Enrollment Period is over, the plan may reject your or charge you more based on your health history.
What Medigap Company is the best?
That is going to be based on opinion, but from an agent’s point of view there are some clear winners who provide great customer service to their agents which often times translates into good service for consumers.
- Mutual Of Omaha
- Manhattan Life Insurance
- United Healthcare
- Boomer Benefits
Do I have to have a Medicare Supplement or Medigap?
No you can choose to cover the gap yourself.
What’s the difference between Medicare Supplement vs Medicare Advantage?
Anyone who’s ready to sign up for Medicare has a lot of decisions to make. But one decision is especially important: Should you choose Medicare Advantage or use Medigap to supplement your Original Medicare plan?
- Original Medicare provides good basic health coverage, but it pays only about 80% of approved costs for hospitals, doctors, and medical procedures, and it doesn’t cover drug costs or such things as dental care.
- Medigap supplemental policies and Medicare Advantage Plans are designed to fill the gaps in Original Medicare coverage.
- If you’re over 65 (or you turn 65 in the next three months) and not already collecting Social Security benefits, you need to sign up to get Medicare Parts A and B—it doesn’t happen automatically.
- You must buy a separate drug plan (Part D) along with Medigap or Medicare Advantage (unless drugs are covered in the Medicare Advantage Plan).
- Consider plan costs, plan doctors, convenience, your lifestyle and travel plans, your health, and any additional benefits in making your choice.
Budgeting for healthcare costs in retirement is tough since there’s usually no way to know whether your expenses each year will be minimal or huge. While Original Medicare provides good basic coverage, it pays only about 80% of the costs it approves for hospitals, doctors, and medical procedures. The other 20% of the bill is your responsibility and—unlike coverage under the Affordable Care Act—there is no cap on the amount a person might have to pay in one year.
Let’s say, for example, that you need heart bypass surgery. The cost would be a minimum of $85,891, according to the American Heart Association.1 You would be responsible for a copay of $17,178—or much more if there are complications or something else goes wrong. In addition, some health needs, such as prescription drugs, hearing aids, eyeglasses, and dental care, are not covered at all by regular Medicare.
There are two basic ways to fill most of these coverage gaps and reduce the risk of tremendous bills in a bad health year:
- Medigap Plans
- Medicare Advantage Plans
About two-thirds of the 61 million seniors and disabled Medicare beneficiaries choose Original Medicare (Parts A and B), which covers hospitals, doctors, and medical procedures. More than 25 million Medicare beneficiaries add Part D prescription drug coverage since Original Medicare doesn’t cover outpatient drug costs. And about 80% supplement their insurance with Medigap (Medicare Supplemental), Medicaid, or employer-sponsored plans.2
While this may be the more expensive option, it has a few advantages. Both Medicare and Medigap plans cover you for any hospital or doctor in the U.S. that accepts Medicare, and the great majority do. There is no need for prior authorization or a referral from a primary care doctor. Coverage includes the entire U.S., which may be important for those who travel frequently or spend part of the year in a different locale. This option is also attractive to those who have particular physicians and hospitals they want to use.
Medicare Advantage Plans
Private Medicare Advantage policies (Part C) are offered by private companies that contract with Medicare to provide all of your Part A and Part B benefits. If you have a Medicare Advantage Plan, you’re still in the Medicare program. Also, you need to sign up for Medicare Parts A and B before you can enroll in a Medicare Advantage Plan.
Medicare Advantage Plans are marketed to consumers under such names as Aetna, Humana, and Kaiser Foundation Medicare plans. They may have no premiums or a lower one compared to the significant premiums for Medigap and drug insurance policies. They cover hospitals and doctors and may include drug insurance and some services not covered by Medicare, such as vision, hearing, and dental. A little more than one-third of Medicare recipients choose one of these plans.2
A Medicare Advantage Plan operates as a health maintenance organization (HMO) or a preferred provider organization (PPO) and limits members to using the doctors and hospitals in their networks. Some plans require prior authorization for specialist care or procedures, or a referral from a primary care doctor. Plans may not cover care given outside of the network’s geographical area.
How do I get Prescription Drug Coverage or Medicare Part D?
Summary: Medicare Part D is prescription drug coverage. You can get Medicare Part D coverage through a stand-alone Medicare prescription drug plan or a Medicare Advantage prescription drug plan. Both are available from Medicare-approved private insurance companies.
Medicare Part D coverage is optional, but if you don’t enroll in Medicare Part D as soon as you’re eligible, you might pay a late-enrollment penalty if you enroll later.
Your monthly plan premium and out-of-pocket expenses for prescription drugs will vary from plan to plan.
It can be a good idea to review your Medicare Prescription Drug Plan coverage every year to see if your plan covers the medications you need now and may need in the upcoming year.
Does the Medigap let me see my same doctors?
Yes, if your doctor takes Medicare they will most likely take your medigap or supplement.
Can I travel with a Medigap Plan?
It is easier to travel with a medicare supplement than it is an advantage plan because of the plan, doctor and network restrictions you must follow being on a subsidized plan or medicare advantage.
How do I save on monthly premiums?
- You find a insurance company that has lover premiums for the same coverage.
2) You get a multi policy discount with a household partner.
3) You lower your benefits.
Why are medicare advantage plans bad?
1)They will make you use their doctors, so you might have to switch so many people think that is bad.
2)You will have to ger referrals and work with in a network, which may be considered bad.
3) It may not give you as rich of benefits when you travel out of network which might be considered bad.
Medicare Supplement Plans Cost?
This is a sample of a medicare supplement plan cost in some parts of Texas.
Medicare Supplement Comparison Chart?
What is the best Medicare Supplement Insurance plan?
How do I choose a Medicare Supplement?
- Call 1-800-MEDIGAP and work with a professional over the phone.
- Have a Medicare Supplement Agent Near Me come to your home.
Medigap Open Enrollemnt Period?
There is not an open enrollment for a Medigap or Medicare Supplement which is very confusing to most since you see all the TV ads come the last quarter of every year, but that is all about Medicare Advantage. So if you are happy on your Medigap or Medicare Advantage then you are good!
Can I switch between Medicare Advantage and Medigap Plans?
You may have chosen Medicare Advantage and later decided that you’d rather have the protections of a Medicare Supplement (Medigap) insurance plan that go along with Original Medicare. The good news is that you can switch from Medicare Advantage to Medigap, as long as you meet certain requirements. This article will help you understand the difference between Medicare Advantage and Medicare Supplement insurance plans, and when and how you can switch between the two.
What is the difference between Medicare Advantage and Medicare Supplement insurance plans?
Medicare Advantage plans and Medicare Supplement insurance plans are two entirely different types of coverage.
A Medicare Advantage plan is an alternate way to get your Original Medicare (Part A and Part B) benefits from a private insurance company. Medicare Advantage plans cover everything that Original Medicare covers, at a minimum, and some may even offer extra benefits for things like routine vision, dental, and hearing care. Most also include Part D coverage for prescription drugs.
Medicare Supplement insurance plans, on the other hand, cover some or all of your out-of-pocket expenses from Original Medicare, such as copayments, coinsurance and deductibles. They do not cover any costs associated with prescription drugs under Part D, and they can’t be used for out-of-pocket costs under Medicare Advantage. If you have a Medicare Advantage plan, it is against the law for a company to sell you a Medicare Supplement insurance plan, unless you are planning to switch to Original Medicare.
When can I switch from Medicare Advantage to Medigap?
To switch from Medicare Advantage is a multi-step process. First, you need to drop your Medicare Advantage plan and return to Original Medicare, Part A and Part B. Then, you can apply for a Medicare Supplement insurance plan.
In most cases, you can only leave a Medicare Advantage plan during certain times of the year, such as:
- The Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period (OEP) between January 1 and March 31.
- The Annual Election Period (AEP), between October 15 and December 7. This is also called the Open Enrollment Period for Medicare Advantage and Medicare Prescription drug coverage.
Outside these periods, you can only switch between Medicare Advantage and Original Medicare if you meet certain requirements like moving outside your plan’s service area. You may also lose your Medicare Advantage plan if it leaves your area or ends its contract with Medicare. You’ll get returned to Original Medicare.
If you move from home into a nursing facility or other institution, or move back home from an institutional setting, you may also be able to switch from Medicare Advantage to Original Medicare.
Once you’ve left your Medicare Advantage plan and enrolled in Original Medicare, you are generally eligible to apply for a Medicare Supplement insurance plan. Note, however, that in most cases, when you switch from Medicare Advantage to Original Medicare, you lose your “guaranteed-issue” rights for Medigap. You generally have guaranteed-issue rights for six months when you are both 65 or older and enrolled in Medicare Part B. Guaranteed-issue rights ensure that you can buy any plan sold in your state, and that you won’t be charged higher premiums based on your health status.
When do I qualify for NO UNDERWRITING?
You can avoid underwriting, and enroll in any Medigap plan that’s available where you live, if you sign up for the Medigap plan during your six-month Medigap Open Enrollment Period. This period begins on the first day of the month that you’re both 65 years old and enrolled in Medicare Part B. For example, if you turn 65 on July 14, and are enrolled in Medicare Part B, you have until December 31 to enroll in a Medigap plan. If you apply for a Medigap plan during your Medigap Open Enrollment Period, your acceptance into the plan is guaranteed, and the plan can’t charge more if you have a health condition. As a prerequisite, you must be enrolled in Original Medicare, Part A and Part B.
Can I be declined coverage?
If you apply for Medigap coverage after your open enrollment period has passed, you may have to go through medical underwriting. The insurer may review your medical history and refuse to sell you a policy, or sell you one at a higher cost, if you do not meet its underwriting requirements.
*Sometimes you can join a Medigap plan after the Medigap Open Enrollment Period without undergoing a medical underwriting review. For example, if you’re enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan and the plan leaves the Medicare program, you might have a “guaranteed-issue right” to a Medigap plan.
What is Medicare Part C?
A Medicare Advantage Plan (like an HMO or PPO) is another Medicare health plan choice you may have as part of Medicare. Medicare Advantage Plans, sometimes called “Part C” or “MA Plans,” are offered by private companies approved by Medicare.
If you join a Medicare Advantage Plan, the plan will provide all of your Part A (Hospital Insurance) and Part B (Medical Insurance) coverage. Medicare Advantage Plans may offer extra coverage, such as vision, hearing, dental, and/or health and wellness programs. Most include Medicare prescription drug coverage (Part D).
Medicare pays a fixed amount for your care every month to the companies offering Medicare Advantage Plans. These companies must follow rules set by Medicare. However, each Medicare Advantage Plan can charge different out-of-pocket costs and have different rules for how you get services (like whether you need a referral to see a specialist or if you have to go to only doctors, facilities, or suppliers that belong to the plan for non‑emergency or non-urgent care). These rules can change each year.
Learn more with this Medicare.gov information:
- Medicare Advantage (Part C)
- Your Guide to Medicare Private Fee-for-Service Plans – PDF (PDF – 28 pages)
- Your Guide to Medicare’s Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) – PDF Plans (PDF – 32 pages)
- Your Guide to Medicare Special Needs Plans – PDF (PDF- 20 pages)
What is a High Deductible Plan?
A High Deductible Medigap Plan allows you to save monthly premium but have a deductible. If you are health or want to “Self Insure” or have more control over your medical spending a HIGH DEDUCTIBLE plan may be right for you.
Is AARP an Insurance Company or do they just sell medicare Supplements?
AARP is a marketing company that spends a ton of money providing services and add on benefits to their members in hopes to sell a medicare policy and collect a premium just like an insurance agent or agency who wants to earn your business, they just spend way more to do it. and that cost is covered by the consumer in the end.