Medigap policies were created in the 1960’s as part of the Federal Medicare program in the United States. These plans were designed to work right alongside Medicare Part A and B to help cover expenses that those two did not cover. These expenses, also called gaps, are items such as co-payments, deductibles, and coinsurance.
To enroll is a Medigap (or Medicare supplement plan) you must have Medicare Part A and Part B first. That way there is something to actually supplement. Many people begin their policy on the effective date of Part B. Some people elect to hold off on enrolling in Part B due to having employer health care coverage until they retire, even after the age of 65.
If you are in need of one of these policies how do you choose? With ten different plans to choose from it can get confusing. There are plans that are more comprehensive, such as Medigap Plan F. And there are also plans for people on a limited income such as a Plan G or Plan N which have lower premiums but more out-of-pocket costs. Working with an experienced independent agent can help you determine which plan fits your needs the best. We can Help!
Money is not the only factor to consider when choosing. Plan F covers all the gaps in Medicare but the monthly premiums are usually higher than other plans. If you are a healthy person and do not mind paying things such as deductibles and co-pays then something like Medigap Plan N might be a great option. Co-pays are up to $20 for an office visit (after you meet the annual Part B deductible) and $50 if you visit the emergency room but are not admitted. Many times people will choose a Plan G which offers the best of both worlds. There is one small deductible to pay once per year then the plan pays everything 100 percent.
All the companies that offer supplement plans are required to give the same coverage under a given plan. This because the plans are standardized, meaning the government has set rules to make sure that each plan has identical benefits regardless of the carrier offering it. So if you get Plan F from one company coverage will be the same at any other company offering Plan F. The only thing that will be different is the monthly premium.
Another important thing to note is that Medigap plans only cover gaps in Medicare-approved expenses. This means Medicare must first pay its portion and then the policy will kick in. A supplement plan will never step up and pay if Part A and B do not pay first. To get quotes for Medigap policies instantly online enter your zip code below.