What are Medicare supplement plans?

4 ways Medicare Advantage and Medicare supplement are different | Wellmark  Blue

 Medicare supplement plans or Medigap is health insurance that you purchase from a private business to cover healthcare expenditures that your Original Medicare does not cover. For example deductibles, copays, and healthcare costs incurred during travels outside the United States.


What expense do Medicare supplement plans don’t cover?


  1. dental treatment
  2. hearing aids
  3. vision care
  4. eyeglasses 
  5. private-duty nursing
  6. Long-term care
  7. Prescription medicines 


Who is eligible for Medicare supplement plans?


A monthly premium is paid for Medigap coverage. Only one individual is covered under Medigap insurance. If you and your partner both desire Medigap coverage, you’ll have to buy one separately.


People who currently have both Medicare Part A, which includes hospital treatments bills, and Medicare Part Part B, which pays the expense of medical services, are qualified for Medicare supplement plans. A Medigap plan is not available to individuals who already have a Medicare Advantage plan.


Available Medicare supplement plans


To learn about the Medigap plans available in your region, call your region’s department of insurance or look up online at Medicare Plan Finder.


Standard Medigap plans are categorized as A, B, C, D, E, F, and G, and provide varying degrees of health coverage. Plans C, E, F, H, I, and J are not available for new applicants for 2021.


Although premiums differ between insurance providers, the benefits of any typical Medigap plan are consistent. A Medigap Plan C coverage, for example, has predetermined benefits regardless of whatever provider you purchase it from. In Minnesota, Massachusetts, and Wisconsin, however, conventional Medicare supplement plans differ.


When can you purchase Medigap? 


If you want to purchase a Medigap plan here is what you need to know.

During the Open Enrollment Period, individuals who are 65 or older, would be eligible to buy a Medigap. You have 6 months to apply. This 6-month term begins the first day of the month the person turns 65 years old and or after enrolling in Medicare Part B.


You can purchase any Medigap coverage at the same price as someone in excellent health during this period. If you try to acquire a Medigap policy outside of this timeframe, you may not be able to receive coverage. Your premiums may be higher if you do acquire coverage.


Cost of  Medicare supplement plans


On top of your Medicare Part B cost, you must pay a monthly payment to the insurance provider for Medigap coverage. The rate of your Medigap coverage is determined by the type of plan you purchase, the insurance provider you choose, your geographic region, and your seniority. If you pay your payments on time, standardized Medigap insurance is guaranteed renewal, even if you have health difficulties.


Standard plan alternatives


Until 2020 Plan C and F were a standard among beneficiaries. But as mentioned above, new applicants are no longer eligible for these plans.

Plan D and Plan G are comparable to Plan C and Plan F, with the exception that they do not cover the Part B deductible. 

The individual  who signed up and became qualified for Medicare before 2020 can  purchase or continue Plan C or F, however, prices may increase and it may be a better option to switch to a plan which doesn’t include the deductible.