What is a Medicare Supplement Plan?

What is a Medicare Supplement?

A Medicare supplement is a type of health insurance sold by private insurers to cover the gaps in Medicare. This is why we refer to the plans as “Medigap Plans.”

Medicare supplement plans pay for the costs that normally Medicare would pass on to you like coinsurance, copayments, and deductibles. You must pay for these when accessing medically-approved services.

If you have a supplement policy, Medicare will first pay its share of your medical expenses. Then your policy will step in and pay its portion, typically the remainder of your bill. However, this can vary depending on which policy you choose from the standard offered plans.

What is a Medicare Supplement Plan G?

Medicare Supplement Plan G has been gaining popularity in recent years. You agree to pay the Part B deductible each year, and after that, it pays everything else. The Part B deductible is $198 per year as of 2020 and quite often we can find Medicare Supplement Plan G premiums that save you more than $198/year. This means that you come out ahead in the long run.

What is Not Covered by Medicare Supplement Plans?

  • Routine dental, vision and hearing exams
  • Hearing aids
  • Eyeglasses or contacts
  • Long-term care or custodial care
  • Retail prescription drugs

Choosing a Medicare Supplement

Since Medigap plans are standardized across all carriers, you will know exactly which benefits you are purchasing. There are several factors which you will want to know about each insurance carrier before you choose your supplement though:

Rates – What is a Medicare supplement premium? It’s the monthly rate that you pay to the insurance company that provides your Medicare Supplement coverage? Find out what premium each insurance carrier will charge you. Are they offering a low premium? Is it competitive with other Medigap insurance companies in your area?

  • Rate trend history – Most policies will have an annual (or semi-annual) rate increase to keep up with medical inflation. What kind of rate increases has the carrier you are considering had over the last 3 years? Are the rate increases reasonable or significantly higher than the competitors?
  • Financial ratings – A number of ratings companies dig into the financial stability of each insurance carrier. These companies give reports, or grades, on the fiscal health of the insurer. Ask your agent what the A.M. Best and Weiss Ratings are for each carrier. Then consider this information when making your selection.

To get a personalized analysis of which Medigap insurance carrier offers the best pricing, financial rating and rate trend history. Request quotes below.

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