If you are in the original Medicare Plan, you may want to buy Medicare Supplement health care insurance, also called Medigap. This plans help you pay for uncovered health care. If you currently have a Medicare Advantage plan such as a Medicare HMO you will not need to purchase a supplemental insurance policy. All Medicare Supplements are sold by private companies and offer a variety of plan choices to fit your needs and budget. There are twelve standard Medicare Supplement plans named A through L suited to fit your needs. Please use the chart on the right labeled “Comparison of Medicare Supplements” for an easier understanding of plans A through L. Please note that some supplemental health care companies offer a “high deductible option” on plan F.
Medicare Supplements fill in the gaps with various healthcare benefits with variable prices. Keep in mind that all Medicare Supplement plans must cover basic benefits.
Several states may have different standards of Medicare Supplemental healthcare, such as Massachusetts, Minnesota and Wisconsin. Check with your state insurance department for guidelines for people with Medicare.
All Medicare plans with the same letter designation cover the same benefits – no matter what carrier is offering it. For example, all plan F policies cover up to part B excess chargers. The premium may vary from carrier to carrier.
We strongly suggest running a free quote on our website so that you may compare plans before deciding which is best suited for you. Every Medicare Supplement policy offers different benefits. For example, some plans may include deductibles and coinsurance while other plans cover some home health care and prescription drugs.
A deductible is the amount you pay for health care before Medicare begins to pay while coinsurance covers the amount you pay for your care, after you pay the deductible.
Medicare Supplements do not cover:
- Long-term care to help you bathe, dress, eat or use the bathroom
- Vision or Dental Care
- Hearing Aids
- All Prescription Drugs
- Private-Duty Nursing
- Medicare Supplement Basic Benefits
The Basic Benefits
Medicare Supplement A is the most basic plan. Each Medicare Supplement policy must offer its most basic benefits.
Medicare Part A
Once you have paid your hospital deductible – original Medicare pays all of your hospital care costs for up to 60 days in a benefit period. If you decide to stay on the plan for more than 60 days – you are required to pay 2012 rate per day for days 61 through 90. For days 91 through 150 the cost will be $512 throughout 2012.
All supplemental plans cover your costs for days 61 through 150. In addition, once you use 150 days of Medicare hospital benefits, all Medicare Supplemental plans cover 365 more hospital days in your lifetime.
Benefit periods begin the day you go to the hospital and ends when you have been out of the hospital for 60 consecutive days. If you were to go to the hospital again after the 60th day, you would have started a new benefit period.
Medicare Part B
Once you pay your yearly Part B deductible, Medicare generally pays 80% of doctor and other medical services. It pays 50% of mental health services.
Every Medicare Supplement plan covers your share of these services such as 20% of Medicare approved doctor services and 50% for mental health services. Medicare approves the payment amount of reasonable health care services.
Medicare does not cover the first 3 pints of blood you need each year. Every Medicare Supplemental plans cover these 3 pints of blood you require each year – Medicare will then pay for any additional blood.
Medicare Supplement Additional Benefits
Medicare Supplement Plan A (as well as Plan B through J) covers only the basic benefits – for some, this is all they need, for others, they may want to have additional supplemental coverage with Plans B through J.
At a higher monthly cost, you can purchase a Medicare Policy with the following additional benefits:
- Medicare Part A Hospital Deductible
- Skilled Nursing Home Costs
- Medicare Part B Deductible
- Medicare Part B Excess Charges
- Foreign Travel Emergency
- At Home Recovery
- Preventive Care
Important! Medicare Supplements sold to people who are new to Medicare aren’t allowed to cover the Part B deductible. Because of this, Plans C and F aren’t available to people who were newly eligible for Medicare on or after January 1, 2020. If you already have or were covered by Plan C or F (or the Plan F high deductible version) before January 1, 2020, you can keep your plan. If you were eligible for Medicare before January 1, 2020, but not yet enrolled, you may be able to buy one of these policies.