Learning Center > Medicare Advantage vs. Medigap: What's the Difference?

Medicare Advantage vs. Medigap: What's the Difference?

“Medicare for All” has been a popular phrase as Obamacare and rules surrounding the health insurance landscape continue to shift. But why is it such a popular topic?

For starters, Medicare has the highest rate of satisfaction among its users. In fact, enrolled ranked both Original Medicare and Medicare Advantage highly according to a 2019 survey.

Still, it can be a difficult task to pick the best Medicare plan. Let's simplify the process by looking at Original Medicare, then discussing how Medicare Part C (Medicare Advantage) plans and Medicare Supplement (Medigap plans) work.

What is Medicare?

Medicare is health insurance for:

  • People who are 65 and over.
  • People under 65 years old who are disabled and have been receiving Social Security Disability benefits for at least 24 months.
  • People suffering from End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) or Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, also known as ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease.

Medicare Part A costs

Original Medicare is broken up into two parts: Part A (for hospitalization) and Part B (for medical services). In most cases, there is no cost for Part A.

But you would have to pay a $458 monthly premium for Medicare Part A if you only paid Medicare taxes for 29 quarters or less (about 7.25 years). And if you paid Medicare taxes between 30-39 quarters (7.5 years to 9.75 years), the standard Part A premium is $252.

Medicare Part B costs

Part B premiums are determined by your modified adjusted gross income. If your income for 2019 was less than or equal to $87,000 for a single or $174,000 for a married couple filing jointly, you will pay the standard Medicare Part B rate, which is $144.60 a month in 2020.

Part B premiums rise to a maximum of $491.60 a month if your income exceeds $500,000 for an individual or $750,000 for a couple filing jointly.

Many people are automatically enrolled in Medicare Part A and Part B when they turn 65 and begin to receive Social Security retirement benefits. But you might be in a situation where you have other health insurance besides Medicare, like a plan through your employer, so you can delay your enrollment in Part B without being penalized and save paying the monthly premium as long as you’re on that plan.

Enrolling in Medicare

If you don’t receive Social Security benefits at age 65, you need to sign up on your own. There are three ways to enroll:

  • Go online to www.SocialSecurity.gov.
  • Call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778).
  • Visit your local Social Security office in person.

The seven-month Initial Enrollment Period (IEP) for Medicare begins three months before you turn 65, continues during your birthday month, and runs for three months after you turn 65. If you don’t enroll in Medicare during this timeframe, you could face penalties for not complying with Medicare rules.

There’s also a Medicare annual enrollment period each year after your initial enrollment, which allows you to make changes to your coverage for the following year.

What are the different types of Medicare plans?

  • Part A is hospital insurance. It helps cover inpatient care, skilled nursing facility care, hospice care, and home healthcare. In most cases, there is no cost for care, but there is a deductible of $1,408 in 2020.

  • Part B is medical insurance. This plan helps cover doctor visits, outpatient care, home healthcare, durable medical equipment, and many preventive care services. Monthly premiums vary based on your income, and there is a deductible of $198 in 2020.

  • Part C is Medicare Advantage. Medicare Advantage combines Medicare Part A and Part B into a health plan and many of these include Part D and additional health benefits. (More on this below).

  • Part D is prescription drug coverage. Part D helps cover the cost of prescription drugs. The standard maximum deductible is $435 in 2020.

  • Plans A-N is Medicare supplemental coverage. Also known as Medigap, there are a host of differences between the plans, which help cover benefits that Medicare Part A and Part B may not cover. Medigap prices vary by plan benefits, not income. Note that Plans C, E, F, H, I, and J are no longer sold to new enrollees.

So, the big question is: Should you consider Medicare Advantage, or enroll in Original Medicare and get a supplemental plan instead? And the short answer is: It depends.

You have to evaluate your healthcare needs and how much you can afford to pay out-of-pocket for health insurance.

What is Medicare Advantage (Medicare Part C)?

Medicare Advantage provides all of your Part A (hospital) and Part B (medical) coverage. A majority of Medicare Advantage plans offer extra coverage, such as vision (78%), hearing, dental care (67%) or wellness programs (72%). Most include Part D prescriptions drug coverage (90%). Those with Private Fee For Service (PFFS) plans that do pay a drug premium pay $65 a month on average.

As a Medicare beneficiary, you have a choice between selecting Original Medicare or choosing a Medicare Advantage plan (also known as Part C), which is provided by private health insurance companies.

How much does Medicare Part C (Medicare Advantage) cost?

Medicare Part C premiums vary by the plan (many plans have $0 premiums). And each Medicare Advantage plan can charge different out-of-pocket costs and have different rules for how you get medical services. For example, most insurance companies require Medicare Advantage plan participants to get pre-approved before they can have a procedure done, but another insurance company might not have that requirement.

Do Medicare Advantage plans cover pre-existing conditions?

Yes, your acceptance is guaranteed except for people who suffer from End State Renal Disease (ESRD) until that changes in 2021. Other than that, Medicare Advantage plans have zero coverage restrictions, and you’re not required to complete any medical history forms.

What is a Medicare Supplement (Medigap) plan?

Medicare supplement plans (Medigap) plans provide extra coverage to help pay for some of the healthcare costs and services that Medicare doesn’t pay. These plans can offer protection from large out-of-pocket medical costs that result from numerous doctor or hospital visits.

It’s important to note that you can’t have more than one Medicare supplement plan. And though Medicare supplement plans may have higher monthly premiums than Medicare Advantage plans, you may want to consider buying a Medicare supplement insurance plan if:

  • You’re likely to have numerous hospital stays during a year.
  • You have regular doctor visits and/or medical services.
  • You live in different places during the year and cannot be confined to a local network.
  • You frequently travel outside the U.S. and want insurance coverage for emergency medical care overseas, which Medicare Part A and Medicare Part B may not provide. Note: Some Medicare supplement plans provide international travel coverage.

A Medicare supplement plan may also be a good fit if you want to visit a specific top-tier medical facility like the Mayo Clinic. You wouldn’t qualify for an in-network check-up with a Medicare Advantage plan, but you’d have the ability to see a Mayo Clinic doctor with a Medicare supplement plan, with coverage for a large chunk of your services.

How much do Medigap plans cost?

Pricing for Medicare supplements are based on the plan you select (high/low benefits), your age at time of enrollment, your state of residence, and the health insurance company you select. That’s why it is important to compare when you shop from plan to plan or even between the same company’s plan differences before choosing a Medicare supplement plan.

Medicare Advantage vs. Medicare Supplement: What’s the difference?

Medicare Advantage offers more choice and covers more medical services than Medicare, while still following all of Medicare’s rules. Meanwhile, Medicare Supplement insurance was created to help Original Medicare recipients cover more of their out-of-pocket expenses.

Remember, Medicare Advantage acts as an alternative to original Medicare, while Medicare Supplement plans are additions to Original Medicare coverage.



  Medicare Advantage Medicare Supplement
Coverage In most cases, copayments (a fixed amount of money you pay) are required. In most cases, it can cover deductibles, copayments, and coinsurance that isn’t covered by Part A and Part B.
Cost Many times $0 or a low monthly cost. Higher monthly cost based on state, gender, and age.
Travel Many plans may cover emergency care when you’re out of the country, but there’s typically a maximum amount the plan will pay. Many plans may cover emergency care when you’re out of the country, but there’s typically a maximum amount the plan will pay.
Prescription Drugs Typically included with coverage. Not covered. You must enroll in a Part D plan for drug coverage.
Routine dental, vision, hearing coverage May be covered depending on the plan selected. Not covered.
Copayments and coinsurance Usually have copayments and/or coinsurance. Typically pays for copayments and coinsurance.
Network Medicare Advantage plans have different networks: HMO, PFFS, and PPO. It’s important to understand the rules about going out of network for your healthcare. No network. See almost any doctor or medical facility that accepts Medicare.

Medicare Advantage and Medigap plans may provide benefits for the following services (but check your plan details for specific benefits):

  • Hospitalization: Medicare limits the number of days you can spend in the hospital. If you pass the maximum number of days, supplemental insurance pays the copayment that Medicare does not cover.
  • Skilled Nursing Facility: Depending on the plan you select, Medicare supplement covers skilled nursing services that Medicare does not cover.
  • Blood: If you need blood, Medigap coverage could pick up the tab on a few pints.
  • Hospice care: Medicare pays for everything but copayment and coinsurance. Medicare supplement could pay the copayment and coinsurance.
  • Inpatient or outpatient hospital medical expenses: Medicare generally pays 80% of all expenses, and a Medigap plan generally pays the remaining 20%.

Other services may be covered based on the supplemental plan you pick.

Shopping tips

Choosing between a Medicare Advantage plan or a Medicare supplement plan on to your Original Medicare coverage depends on your situation. Ask yourself these types of questions:

  • Do I travel outside of the United States regularly?
  • Do I live in a different state for a portion of the year?
  • Do I want to see any doctor and not be limited to a network?
  • Is my budget more important than my health benefits?
  • Are extra benefits like dental and vision coverage important to me?

But you don’t have to go it alone: We can answer your questions about Medicare and help you find the best Medicare plan for your needs. Get Medicare quotes, compare plans, or contact us today.

Note: Medicare supplement plan benefits are subject to state rules and regulations. Benefits described here encompass common Medigap plans available in the marketplace. Please check your insurance policy documents or talk to a customer service representative for more information.

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What you should read next

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Whatever option you choose, be sure to have 3 items handy before you enroll in a plan or make changes to your current plan during AEP: Your Medicare card Your list of doctors, prescriptions and what is important to your health Pen and paper to take notes More on Medicare Eligibility Medicare is a federal health insurance program developed in 1965. To be eligible for Medicare you must meet one of the following criteria: You are age 65 or older You are under age 65, disabled, and have been receiving Social Security disability benefits for at least 24 months. You have End Stage Renal Disease or Lou Gehrig’s Disease (also known as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis or ALS). You can visit Medicare.gov to see if you’re eligible for Medicare and calculate your estimated premiums for certain plans. Medicare Resources You don’t have to go it alone when choosing a Medicare Advantage plan or Prescription Drug Plan. We’re here to help you navigate the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period through a number of ways, including our Medicare resources and our licensed insurance agents. You can also read through some of our articles to learn more about Medicare. Medicare 101 Guide Top Medicare Frequently Asked Questions Understanding Original Medicare vs. Medicare Advantage
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Medicare Part A Covers some of the costs of care provided by the following facilities and providers: Inpatient hospital care Hospice Care Home Health Care Skilled Nursing Facility Care Medicare Part B Covers medically necessary services and supplies, including: Doctor’s visits Diagnostic tests (x-rays, blood work, MRIs, etc.) Therapy visits (physical, occupational) Some cancer treatments like chemotherapy Outpatient surgeries like arthroscopic surgeries Outpatient mental health visits Durable medical equipment like bottled oxygen How much does Original Medicare cost? When you use your Medicare insurance, you will have to pay for some of the costs out of pocket. But the out-of-pocket costs are different for Parts A and B. When you have a hospital stay, you’ll have to pay the Part A deductible which is $1,408 in 2020. You’ll pay this inpatient hospital deductible each time you are admitted to the hospital, provided you haven’t received hospital or skilled nursing facility services within the previous 60-day benefit period. Meanwhile, Part B has three types of charges: Part B deductible: $198 for 2020, which you only pay once each year. After that, Medicare will pay 80% of the cost, and you’ll pay 20% for every Medicare-covered Part B service or procedure you receive. Part B coinsurance: 20% of the cost for each service or procedure Part B excess charges: Up to 15% of the Medicare-approved charge if your doctor does not accept the Medicare-approved amount for a service (known as Medicare assignment). For the most part, your out-of-pocket costs could be quite low if you’re healthy and don’t need many health care services. And if you get the flu or need some therapy for a sprained ankle, your 20% coinsurance could total a few hundred dollars for the entire year. But your out-of-pocket costs could be very high if you suffer a major illness or need specialized surgery. Plus, Original Medicare does not cover prescriptions. So if you need medications, costs could be high. One last point on costs: There’s no cap on your spending with Original Medicare. This means there’s no out-of-pocket maximum cap like you may have seen with your previous traditional, private health insurance plan. And this means your out-of-pocket costs could be extremely high if you require treatment for a chronic condition or illness. Medicare Advantage may help control costs Many Medicare beneficiaries choose to enroll in Medicare Advantage plans to curb out-of-pocket costs and get prescription drug coverage. Medicare Advantage (also known as Medicare Part C) is a contract between the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and a private health insurance company. Medicare Advantage plans must cover everything that Original Medicare covers. When you join a Medicare Advantage plan, you may still pay for certain expenses including: Monthly plan premium (if any): Many plans have a low-cost or $0 monthly premium. (You must continue to pay your monthly Part B premium). Annual deductible (if any) Copayments and/or coinsurance Still, these costs are often lower than what you’d pay under Part A or B. One big benefit of a Medicare Advantage plan is that it includes an annual out-of-pocket maximum - so you’ll know your costs are capped, no matter what services or treatments you might need during a year. Medicare Advantage provides extra benefits Medicare Advantage can serve as a way to cover services that Original Medicare doesn’t. That’s because these plans often go beyond Original Medicare coverage offerings. These extra benefits can vary by state and health plan, but they often include: Chiropractic care and acupuncture. Dental coverage: Sometimes for an additional premium. Emergency coverage outside of the United States Fitness benefits: Discounted or free gym memberships and silver sneakers programs. Hearing coverage: Exams, and sometimes discounted hearing aids. Prescription drug coverage: You’ll typically share the cost of your medications with your insurance company in the form of copayments or coinsurance for each prescription. Transportation: To and from medical appointments. Vision coverage: Exams, lenses, and the cost of frames. An example of how it works Let’s take vision coverage as an example. Original Medicare doesn’t cover basic vision services like eye exams and lenses. If you pay out of pocket, you can expect to pay (on average): $114 for an eye exam $113 for lenses $238 for frames Based on these averages, you could pay a total of $465 for an exam, lenses, and frames. While benefits vary by state and insurance company, many Medicare Advantage plans have exams and lenses for $0. Many companies could also give you a credit towards the purchase of frames. And though you probably don’t buy new glasses every year, it’s unlikely that prices for lenses and frames will decrease. Getting frames from a Medicare Advantage plan can save you quite a bit of cash, especially given the relatively low (or $0) plan premiums they charge. You will find that other extra benefits work in the same way. The hearing or dental coverage available from Medicare Advantage plans may not be completely comprehensive or free, but it’s often less expensive than what you can get from an individual policy. How Medicare Supplements can help control costs Medicare Supplement insurance is another way to lower your Medicare out-of-pocket costs. These policies are offered by private insurance companies and work with Original Medicare, paying for some or all of the costs that you’d normally pay. The costs you have to pay with Original Medicare are known as “gaps in coverage.” Medicare Supplements help to fill these gaps - hence the name “Medigap” plans. You’ll pay a premium directly to your insurance company for Medigap coverage. And Medigap can help with some or all of: Part A deductibles Part B deductibles Part B coinsurance Part B excess charges Medicare Supplement plans come in standardized plans, with each plan paying a slightly different portion of the Original Medicare gaps. The standardized plans are known by letter: A, B, C, D, F, G, K, L, M, and N. Plans F, G, and N are among the most popular with people on Medicare. Medigap plans offer a lot of freedom when it comes to choosing a doctor. Your coverage is portable all over the country, so you can see any doctor who accepts Medicare patients. You don’t have to deal with a network, or get a referral from a primary care physician. As an added bonus: Many Medigap plans also cover you outside the United States, so you can have emergency coverage while you’re traveling as part of your retirement routine. What Medigap plans don’t cover There are a number of items that Medicare Supplement insurance doesn’t cover. For starters, they don’t cover prescription drugs, so you’ll need to enroll in a stand alone prescription drug plan to help cover costs. These are also available from private insurance companies. Medigap plans also don’t cover vision, hearing, or dental. While it’s possible that some Medigap plans offer discounts on these items, none provide comprehensive coverage. Medigap plans also provide no coverage for staying in a nursing home or other facility for long-term care. Instead, you’ll have to purchase individual coverage from an insurance company to cover these items. Or, you may be able to purchase coverage for some of these items from your Medigap insurer in a separate supplemental policy. With either option, you’d pay an additional premium for the coverage, but buying standalone vision or dental coverage from another company might be the more expensive option. How to enroll in a Medicare Advantage or Medigap plan The most important thing to know is that you’re not “stuck” in a Medicare plan: If you want to switch Medicare plans, you can do so during the Annual Enrollment Period, which is from October 15 to December 7 each year. You can also switch from one Medicare Advantage plan to another, or go back to Original Medicare during the Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period, which is from January 1 to March 31 each year. And if you want to learn how to reduce your out-of-pocket medical expenses in the meantime, you just need to get smart on maximizing your Medicare benefits. Save time, learn more Let us do the hard work for you, so you can save time and find the best Medicare plan for your needs. Working together, we can find and compare Medicare Advantage plans in your area to see if they work with your doctors and cover your medications.
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Are you turning 65? Turns out, you’ll be joined by thousands of birthday buddies. In fact, 10,000 Americans turn 65 every day - a real cause for celebration, whether it’s the milestone of retirement or your journey to the right Medicare coverage. Still, many Americans are confused by Medicare: how to enroll, when their enrollment period is and what plan to even enroll in. But the process doesn’t need to be so complex. Here’s your Medicare checklist for turning 65. 1. Make Sure You Qualify For Premium-Free Medicare Part A Most people qualify for Medicare Part A because of their work history. If you’re a U.S. citizen or permanent legal resident, you qualify for premium-free Part A as long as you have paid payroll taxes for at least 10 years. Call your local Social Security Office to see if you’re eligible for Medicare Part A. You may receive a paper statement from SSA [sample here] as a reference, or you can create an account online at ssa.gov. What If You Didn’t Work Enough? You may still qualify for Medicare Part A through your spouse if you don’t (or won’t) have 40 quarters of work history. You’re eligible if your spouse qualifies for premium-free Part A, and: You have been married for at least one year and your spouse is eligible for Social Security benefits. You're divorced and your former spouse is eligible for Social Security benefits. You must have been married at least 10 years, and you must be single now. You’re widowed, but were married for at least nine months, and you are currently single. If you don’t meet any of these criteria, you can either continue working until you’ve logged 40 quarters, or pay for Part A. For 2020, the Part A premium is $458 per month, but this amount may be reduced if you have some work history. 2. Figure Out When You’re Going To Need Part B If you are currently employed and you are covered by an employer health plan, and your employer has more than 20 employees, you don’t have to sign up for Part B until you retire and give up your employer-based health coverage. Many people can’t take full Social Security benefits until age 66, so it’s common to delay retirement by a year. You can delay Part B as long as your employer coverage meets Medicare’s minimum requirements. But if you work for a small company with less than 20 employees, you’ll probably need to enroll in Part B when you’re first eligible. Be sure to talk about this with your employer before your 65th birthday. There’s no reason to pay the Part B premium until you’ll actually need Medicare. 3. Decide When You’re Taking Social Security There are a few nuances to receiving Social Security and how it impacts when you can enroll in Medicare Parts A and B: If you take Social Security at age 65, your enrollment in Medicare will be automatic. If you pass on Social Security at age 65, but want to sign up for Medicare, you’ll have to apply for it separately. You can use ssa.gov to enroll if you choose to enroll before your 65th birthday. If you wait until after you’re 65, you’ll have to visit a Social Security office to sign up for Medicare. 4. Know Which Doctors You Want To See When You Have Medicare Make sure the doctors you see, or want to see, accept Medicare. Finding out ahead of time can help you avoid surprises. If you plan to move during your retirement, it’s wise to get recommendations for doctors in your new hometown and see if they accept Medicare patients. 5. Get A Firm Understanding Of Your Medications When it comes to medications and aging into Medicare, there are 3 steps to take: You should always know your medications and their doses. Talk to your doctor about generic versions of your prescriptions to reduce costs. Find out if your doctor thinks you might need a new or different medication in the future. 6. Understand The Gaps In Original Medicare Medicare doesn’t cover 100% of your health care costs. Instead, you’ll pay a portion out of your own pocket. The costs you pay for Part A differ from what you’ll pay for Part B. Gaps In Medicare Part A Part A will cover you for inpatient type of events, like: Hospital stays Home health care Hospice Skilled nursing facilities When you have a hospital stay, you’ll have to pay the Part A deductible. For 2020, the deductible is $1,408. You’ll pay this inpatient hospital deductible each time you are admitted to the hospital, provided you haven’t received hospital or skilled nursing facility services within the previous 60-day benefit period. Gaps In Medicare Part B Part B of Original Medicare covers the services you’d receive in an outpatient setting, including: Doctors and therapy appointments Lab work and diagnostic imaging Outpatient surgeries Medical equipment like oxygen machines Some cancer treatments like chemotherapy When you use Part B coverage, you can expect to pay out of pocket for each service. Your share of cost can include: Part B deductible: $198 for 2020 (you only pay the Part B deductible once each year). Part B coinsurance: 20% of the cost for each service or procedure. Part B excess charges: Up to 15% of the Medicare-approved charge if your doctor does not accept the Medicare-approved amount for a service (known as Medicare assignment). The biggest Part B expense is the 20% coinsurance, which you’ll pay throughout the year. There are other costs you can expect to pay out of pocket with Original Medicare, including things like dental care, eye exams, hearing aids, and more. Keep in mind that there is no cap on how much you can spend out of pocket with Original Medicare. How To Find The Right Plan For You Make sure any Medicare plan you consider: Covers the doctors you want to see Covers the medications you need Has a premium you can afford You can also narrow your choices down further by asking yourself: Do I intend to split my time between two or more States? Am I comfortable with an HMO-type arrangement, or using a set group of doctors and facilities? If you spend a lot of time travelling or living in a second home, you’ll want to consider Medicare Supplement Insurance. But if you’re comfortable with a particular HMO-type medical group and plan to live in one place, then Medicare Advantage could be right for you. Your Options Beyond Original Medicare There are Medicare plans available that help close the coverage gap of what Original Medicare doesn’t cover. They include: Medicare Advantage Medicare Part D (Prescription Drug Plans) Medicare Supplement (Medigap) Medicare Advantage Plans Medicare Advantage plans, also known as Medicare Part C, is a contract between a private insurer and Medicare. These plans must cover everything that Original Medicare covers. Medicare Advantage plans work like traditional private health insurance, so you may see certain out-of-pocket costs with Medicare Advantage, including: Monthly premium: Many Part C plans don’t have a monthly premium. Annual deductible: Most plans don’t have a deductible. Copayments or coinsurance for services and procedures. Medicare Advantage plans also offer a number of added benefits, which vary by state and health plan. Some benefits include: Fitness programs like Silver Sneakers or free memberships to local gyms. Vision coverage for exams, lenses, and sometimes frames. Hearing coverage for exams and discounted hearing aids. Dental coverage for basic dental services. Transportation to and from medical appointments Prescription drug coverage (some plans) Medicare Advantage plans can also provide emergency coverage outside the United States. With the international coverage, out of pocket maximum protection, and a wide range of extra benefits, you can see why many people choose Medicare Advantage plans. Prescription Drug Plans Prescription Drug plans (PDPs or Medicare Part D) help with the cost of prescription drugs. Each company creates their PDPs differently, but you can expect to pay these costs for coverage: Monthly premium, which varies based on income Annual deductible (although many plans don’t have a deductible) Copayment or coinsurance per filled prescription The copayments and coinsurance costs increase as the total amount your plan pays rises above certain thresholds, also known as coverage stages: Coverage Stage 1 – Deductible Stage: You pay full price until you’ve spent $435 (for 2020). Coverage Stage 2 – Initial Coverage Stage: You pay small copayments or coinsurance for each prescription. Coverage Stage 3 – Coverage Gap Stage: Also known as the Medicare “Donut Hole.” Once your total drug costs (what you’ve paid plus what your plan has paid) exceed $4,020, you hit the coverage gap. You’d then pay 25% of the cost of prescriptions. Coverage Stage 4 – Catastrophic Stage: Once your total drug costs (excluding what your plan has paid) exceed $6,350, you pay no more than 5% for medications These coverage stages reset on January 1 each year. But it’s important to know that there is no out-of-pocket cap on drug costs under Part D. Medicare Supplement Insurance Medicare Supplement Insurance, also known as Medigap, is designed to fill the gaps in Original Medicare. Medigap supplements Original Medicare by paying some or all of the expenses that you’d normally have to pay out of pocket. Medigap policies are issued in 10 standardized plans: A, B, C, D, F, G, K, L, M, and N. Each of these plans cover a slightly different portion of the Original Medicare gaps. Plan G is a popular Medigap option that covers every gap except for the Part B deductible. If you have Plan G, you can expect to pay for the first $198 in Part B expenses (like doctor’s visits). Plan G will then cover every penny of any Medicare-approved service or procedure. Several Medicare supplements provide some international coverage, including plans C, D, F, G, M, and N. Medigap plans also give you maximum flexibility, so you can see any doctor or use any facility that accepts Medicare patients, anywhere in the United States. You’re not bound to a network, or reliant upon referrals. Medicare Supplement Insurance plans don’t cover prescription drugs, so you’ll need to enroll in a stand alone Prescription Drug plan to get drug coverage. Considerations Before Choosing A Plan Make sure any Medicare plan you consider: Covers the doctors you want to see Covers the medications you need Has a premium you can afford You can also narrow your choices down further by asking yourself: Do I intend to split my time between two or more States? Am I comfortable with an HMO-type arrangement, or using a set group of doctors and facilities? If you spend a lot of time travelling or living in a second home, you’ll want to consider Medicare Supplement Insurance. But if you’re fine with HMO-type medical groups and plan to live in one place, then Medicare Advantage could be right for you. As you approach age 65, it’s important to start your research sooner rather than later. Make sure you know what plans your doctors will accept, and which plans cover your medications. Comparing Medicare plan features and costs doesn’t have to be complicated though. You can find and compare Medicare quotes or enroll in a plan through our site. We also have licensed Medicare agents available to help answer any questions you may have.
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