What Is a Medicare Supplement Insurance Plan?

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A Medicare Supplement Insurance plan (also called Medigap) can help cover some of the out-of-pocket health care costs that Original Medicare doesn't, such as copays and deductibles. Each type of plan offers a different combination of basic health insurance benefits.

Use the following guide to compare Medicare Supplement Insurance plans and find the policy that fits your health care needs.

Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans

Medicare Part A and Part B both require deductibles and coinsurance or copays. Medigap plans help beneficiaries fill in these cost "gaps" that can add up to potentially large dollar amounts.

The chart below lists the basic benefits offered by each type of Medigap plan.

2017 Medigap Plans Chart

Medigap Plan F Is the Most Popular

Medicare Supplement Insurance Plan F is the most popular Medigap plan, largely because it offers the most comprehensive range of basic benefits. Plan F is the only Medigap plan that covers all nine of the basic Medigap benefits, including the Medicare Part B deductible and Part B excess charges.

Medigap Plan F will no longer be available for purchase after 2020. But if you've purchased the plan before that time, it will remain in effect.  

How Much Do Medigap Plans Cost?

Each of the ten types of Medigap plans are different, designed to give beneficiaries multiple options. The rates for different plans will vary. The important thing to remember is that the basic benefits are standardized by Medicare. No matter where you buy Medigap Plan G, the basic benefits have to be the same.

Shop around for plan rates. Connect with a licensed agent to compare plan costs by calling 1-888-264-0148.

Do Medigap Plans Cover Pre-Existing Conditions?

The best time to buy a Medicare Supplement Insurance plan is during your Medigap open enrollment period. During your open enrollment period, insurance companies cannot consider any pre-existing conditions when deciding whether or not to offer you a policy. They also cannot charge you more for a Medigap plan based on pre-existing conditions.

Your Medigap open enrollment period only lasts for six months. It begins as soon as you are at least 65 years old and enrolled to receive Medicare Part B benefits.

If you need help understanding the basic benefits for any policy, there are state specific agencies that offer free assistance to help answer your questions.  

Once you compare the basic benefits available through Medicare Supplement Insurance plans, connect with a licensed agent to get a free quote for plans in your area.

Speak with a licensed agent at 888-264-0148 to learn more about your Medicare Supplement plan options.

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Sources:

SHIP Technical Assistance Center: www.shiptacenter.org/

Medicare.gov: www.medicare.gov/supplement-other-insurance/when-can-i-buy-medigap/switching-plans/switch-medigap 

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