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Medicare 101

Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans

Christian Worstell

by Christian Worstell | Published February 18, 2021 | Reviewed by John Krahnert

Medicare Supplement Insurance plans (also called Medigap) help cover some of the out-of-pocket costs for hospital and medical services that are associated with Original Medicare.

Learn more about each type of Medigap plan and compare basic benefits in order to find the right health insurance option for your needs.

The 10 Standardized Medigap Plans

There are 10 standardized Medicare Supplement Insurance plan types sold in most states, though Minnesota, Wisconsin and Massachusetts have different options.

Though Medigap plans are sold by private insurance companies, the basic benefits of each type of Medigap plan are standardized by the federal government.

For example, Medigap Plan F sold in North Carolina must offer the same basic benefits as Medigap Plan F in Oregon. The prices charged for each plan, however, may vary based on your location, your insurance provider and your age.

This chart helps illustrate the basic benefits of each type of Medicare Supplement Insurance plan.

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Medicare Supplement Benefits

Part A coinsurance and hospital coverage

Part B coinsurance or copayment

Part A hospice care coinsurance or copayment

First 3 pints of blood

Skilled nursing facility coinsurance

Part A deductible

Part B deductible

Part B excess charges

Foreign travel emergency

A B C* D F1* G1 K2 L3 M N4
50% 75%
50% 75%
50% 75%
50% 75%
50% 75% 50%
80% 80% 80% 80% 80% 80%

* Plan F and Plan C are not available to Medicare beneficiaries who became eligible for Medicare on or after January 1, 2020. If you became eligible for Medicare before 2020, you may still be able to enroll in Plan F or Plan C as long as they are available in your area.

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1 Plans F and G offer high-deductible plans that each have an annual deductible of $2,370 in 2021. Once the annual deductible is met, the plan pays 100% of covered services for the rest of the year. The high-deductible Plan F is not available to new beneficiaries who became eligible for Medicare on or after January 1, 2020.

2 Plan K has an out-of-pocket yearly limit of $6,220 in 2021. After you pay the out-of-pocket yearly limit and yearly Part B deductible, it pays 100% of covered services for the rest of the calendar year.

3 Plan L has an out-of-pocket yearly limit of $3,110 in 2021. After you pay the out-of-pocket yearly limit and yearly Part B deductible, it pays 100% of covered services for the rest of the calendar year.

4 Plan N pays 100% of the Part B coinsurance, except for a copayment of up to $20 for some office visits and up to $50 copayment for emergency room visits that don’t result in an inpatient admission.

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Plan F Is the Most Popular Medicare Supplement Insurance Plan

Of the 10 standardized Medicare Supplement Insurance plans, the most popular is Medigap Plan F. It covers all nine of the basic benefits a Medigap plan can cover.

It's important to note that Plan F will not be available for new Medicare beneficiaries beginning Jan. 1, 2020.

  • If you already have Plan F, you may keep it after that date.

  • If you became eligible for Medicare before 2020, you can still buy Plan F if it is available where you live.

Does Medigap Insurance Cover Prescription Drugs?

Medicare Supplement Insurance plans do not offer prescription drug coverage. If you want prescription drug benefits, you can consider purchasing Medicare Part D coverage.

You can get Part D coverage through a standalone Prescription Drug Plan that works with Original Medicare, or you can buy a Medicare Advantage plan with prescription drug coverage included.

You can compare Part D plans available where you live and enroll in a Medicare prescription drug plan online when you visit MyRxPlans.com.

Enrolling in Medicare Supplement Insurance

The best time to purchase a Medicare Supplement Insurance plan is during your Medigap Open Enrollment Period (OEP). This period begins as soon as you are both:

  • Age 65 or older AND

  • Enrolled in Medicare Part B

Your open enrollment period lasts for six months. During this period, insurance companies are required to sell you a Medigap policy regardless of your health at the time of enrollment.

Insurers also cannot charge you more for a policy based on preexisting conditions if you enroll during your Medigap open enrollment period.

Insurance companies may let you purchase a Medigap plan if you are under 65 but qualify for Original Medicare benefits due to a specific condition or disability. Please note certain state exclusions for ERSD.

If you have questions, contact your state health insurance office.

Call today to speak with a licensed agent and learn more about your Medicare Supplement Insurance options.

 

Find Medigap plans in your area.

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Christian Worstell is a health care and policy writer for MedicareSupplement.com. He has written hundreds of articles helping people better understand their Medicare coverage options.

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Compare Medigap Plans 2021

See how the 10 Medigap plans differ. Review our chart for a detailed comparison of Medicare Supplement insurance benefits and compare Medigap options where you live. Read more
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