If you have Original Medicare, there could be some out-of-pocket medical expenses that aren’t covered which you will be responsible in paying for. Many beneficiaries consider purchasing a Medicare Supplement Plan to help cover some of these out-of-pocket costs.
Like most states, there are 10 standardized Medigap Plans available for Medicare beneficiaries to enroll in (excluding Massachusetts, Minnesota, and Wisconsin who have their own standardized plans.) These plans are identified by a letter starting from A through N. Before enrolling in a Medicare Supplement, you should always compare Medigap plans when researching your options. Seniors wanting to enroll in a Medigap policy should evaluate their personal financial and health situation and choose a plan that meets their needs.
Comparing Medigap Insurance Plans
Below is a chart showing Medicare Supplement plans and benefits each one covers.
If you do not have a Medicare Supplement, you can end up paying hefty out-of-pocket medical expenses. Below are a few examples:
The Part A deductible for an inpatient hospital stay is $1,340 in 2018 for each benefit period. In 2018, the Part B deductible is $183 per month. Before Medicare starts paying anything for covered hospital or medical services, you must pay the appropriate deductible amount.
Copayments and/or coinsurance
Part A copayment amounts vary based on the length and location of stay. Copayments for inpatient hospital stays in 2018 are $335 per day for days 61 – 90, and $670 per day for days 91 and beyond, up to a certain lifetime limit. The copayment for skilled nursing facility stays in 2018 is $167.50 per day for days 21- 100. Part B generally covers 80% of outpatient medical services, equipment and supplies, and you pay the balance, 20%.
The first three pints of blood.
If you require a blood transfusion, usually you have to pay any expenses the hospital may have incurred for the first three pints of blood. Medicare pays for any additional blood transfusions needed.
The Part B excess charges
above the Medicare-approved amount for a covered service you receive from a provider if he or she is legally allowed to charge more.
Most Popular Medigap Plans
Plan F is the most comprehensive and popular Medicare Supplement Plan available for beneficiaries to purchase. Beneficiaries with Plan F end up having minimal out-of-pocket medical expenses after Original Medicare’s portion has been taken care of. Plan F is also one of the two plans that covers 100% of Medicare Part B excess charges.
Plan N covers the same basic benefits along with 100% of Medicare Part B coinsurance with the only exception being that it requires $20 co-payment for office visits and up to $50 for emergency room visits. It does not cover Part B deductible or excess charges.
Plan G has similar benefits as Plan F. Along with covering basic benefits, Plan G also covers excess charges but it does not cover Part B deductible.
The Costs of Medigap Plans
Since Medigap policies are offered by many private insurance companies, benefits of each plan type is the same across all carriers except for the cost of the premiums. Each insurance company sets their own premiums. The cost of your Medigap policy are “rated” by:
Community-Rated (Non-Age Related):
Individuals in a given area are charged the same rate, regardless of age
Charged based on the age of the applicant, but price does not increase as policyholder ages
Rates are cheaper at 65, but prices scale as policyholder ages
Comparing Medigap Policies
At Plan Medigap, we have a team of experienced and licensed agents that can assist you in searching for a Medigap policy that fits your needs. We can help compare Medigap policies in your area! Call one of our expert representatives at (800) 750-2407 .