Medicare Supplement Plans are recommended to help you save money. There are ten Medicare Supplement Plans (Plans A, B, C, D, F, G, K, L, M, and N). When you sign up for a Medicare Supplement Plan, regardless of which one you choose, you still keep Medicare as your primary insurance. So you will still need your red, white, and blue insurance card. When you file a claim, Medicare will be the first to pay out, and then your supplement will pay out the remainder that it covers.
What Plans Are Most Popular?
Plan F provides the most comprehensive coverage out of all of the plans, and that is why it is called “first dollar coverage.” It is the most comprehensive coverage but also the most expensive. But it is no longer taking new enrollees. “First dollar coverage” means that from the first dollar you accrue in medical expenses, if those services are covered by Medicare, then they will pay their cost. These include:
- Part A and B Deductibles
Thus, Plan G is recommended. It covers everything that Part F covers except for your Medicare Plan B deductible.
Is Medigap The Same Thing? What About Medicare Advantage Plans?
A great question many people ask. They get confused because they’ve also heard of Medicare Advantage plans. Yes, Medicare Supplement Plans are also called Medigap plans, and the two terms can be used interchangeably. The terms come from these plans filling in the “gaps” of Medicare coverage with a supplemental plan.
This is not the same, however, as a Medicare Advantage Plan, which are plans with benefits. It also has an annual open enrollment period, whereas you can only apply for Medicare Supplement Plans when you turn 65. If you have a Medicare Advantage Plan then you may not qualify for a Medicare Supplement Plan.
The Risks Of Not Using An Agent
When you enroll directly on a website or through the insurance company, it limits your choices. There are many reasons to go through an agent instead. The first reason is to avoid tons of phone calls from solicitors.
When you go to the website and see the enroll button next to a bunch of plans it will take you to another page where you have to enter your name, address, phone number, and then hit submit. But in the fine print under the submission page, you may see a disclaimer that says you are allowing your information to be sent to insurance companies to contact you about their plans.
They only have one type of each plan such as a plan F or a plan G. Additionally, insurance companies have no incentives to tell you whether or not you can actually get the same plan from a different provider but for less money for more benefits for your situation. They use pushy sales tactics without giving you the benefit of comparing different plans.
Again, an experienced Medicare agent can ensure that you are aware of important deadlines and of the variety of plans out there.