What is Medicare Supplement?

Medicare Supplement can be known as MedSupp or Medigap insurance. These supplement plans help cover an individual’s out-of-pocket expenses that Original Medicare Part A and B do not cover. Medicare has breaks in coverage where it does not include some expenses, including deductibles, coinsurance, and copays. However, if you have a Medicare Supplement insurance policy, Medicare will pay its share then your Medicare Supplement will pick up the rest. Coverage can depend on the type of policy you have in place.
In many states, there are ten plans available, which are referred to with different letters that help match each plan with their list of benefits. Medicare supplement insurance plans have uniform coverage across many states. So, if you are researching for Medicare Supplement Plan A, the coverage will be the same with every insurance company that provides Plan A coverage.

What Does Medicare Supplement Cover?

Supplemental Medicare was created with you in mind. Supplemental Medicare helps cover other expenses that Original Medicare would not usually cover. However, the coverage for a Supplement plan depends on the type of plan you choose.

  • Plan A – with this coverage, you receive the standard benefits such as assistance with copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles that are not covered with Medicare Part A and Part B.
  • Plan B – this coverage is only provided in the state of Pennsylvania. Plan B offers individuals with the same coverage as Plan A, but in addition, it covers Medicare Part A deductibles at hospitals.
  • Plan F – this is the highest coverage you can receive with Supplement Medicare. With Plan F, you receive coverage for out-of-pocket expenses already covered by your Medicare Supplement Plan. However, in January 2020, Medicare Supplement Plan F will no longer be available for newly eligible individuals.
  • Plan G – receive coverage for comprehensive protection. This includes Plan B expenses and Foreign Travel Emergency. Beginning in January 2020, this plan will take the place of the Plan F.
  • Plan N – offers lower premium rates with a small yearly deductible and copays. Plan F provides coverage for Medicare Part B copayments, regular copays, and coinsurance, along with hospital deductibles.

What is Not Covered Under Medicare Supplement?

With Medicare Supplement, the coverage does not kick in until your Original Medicare policy has already paid their portion. Medicare will pay for their coverage, and then pass the remaining balance to your Medicare Supplement policy. However, there are some expenses that Medicare and Medicare Supplement will not cover. These include:

  • Contacts or Eyeglasses
  • Custodial Care
  • Dental, Vision, or Hearing Exams
  • Hearing Aids
  • Long-Term Care
  • Retail Prescription Drug Coverage

Who is Eligible for Medicare Supplement?

Medicare Supplement is not available for everyone. There are some requirements you must meet to be eligible for Medicare Supplement. If you are over the age of 65 and already receiving Medicare Part A and B benefits, you can apply for a Medicare Supplement insurance plan. However, you must enroll during the one-time Open Enrollment. Those who are under the age of 65 and receive Medicare Part B coverage are not considered eligible for Medicare Supplement coverage unless they have lost coverage. Also, depending on the state in which you live, if you have a disability, you may be eligible to receive Medicare Supplement coverage even under the age of 65.

The initial open enrollment for Medicare begins three months prior, three months after, or the month you begin eligible for Medicare benefits. This can be when you turn 65 years of age or after you receive disability benefits. Also, there is a Fall Enrollment period, beginning October 15th – December 7th each year for individuals to amend their Medicare Advantage policies, or switch from Original Medicare and Medicare Advantage or amend your Medicare Part D benefits.

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