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Medicare Supplement


Medicare Supplement Plans, also known as Medigap Plans, are health insurance plans that work alongside your Original Medicare (Parts A and B) coverage to help pay for out-of-pocket costs like copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles associated with your Medicare Part A and Part B services. They are often referred to as Medigap Plans as they help fill the coverage gaps left by Original Medicare. There are 10 types of Medigap plans available from private insurance companies.

How do Medicare Supplement Plans work?


Medicare Supplement Plans are designed to help fill the insurance gaps in your Part A and Part B Original Medicare coverage. When you enroll in a Medigap plan you’ll choose from one of the 10 types available and you’ll pay a Medigap premium in addition to your Original Medicare premium. Your Medigap carrier will then, depending on the benefits offered by your chosen plan, help cover your out-of-pocket healthcare costs.

KEY FACT: Medicare Supplement Plans are designed to compliment Original Medicare, not replace it.

What do Medicare Supplement plans cover?


Medicare Supplement Plans help cover out-of-pocket costs for Original Medicare Parts A and B. Benefits offered vary between plan types. Insurers can offer up to ten types of plans, which are labeled A, B, C, D, F, G, K, L, M, N, but they do not have to offer all ten different plan options. The benefits offered between the plan types vary, so for example Plan B offers different coverage than plan G. However, the plans are standardized so that each plan type of the same letter must offer the same coverage. This means that a Plan type A offered by one insurer will provide the same benefits as a Plan type A from another insurer making it easy to compare plans from different carriers.

KEY FACT: Medicare Supplement plans do not cover prescription drugs, to add this coverage you may choose to consider enrolling in a Medicare Prescription Drug plan.

The Medicare Supplement comparison chart below shows how coverage varies between plans:

Medigap Benefits
Part A coinsurance and hospital costs up to an additional 365 days after Medicare benefits are used up
ABCDF*
GKLMN
Part B coinsurance or copayment
ABCDF*
GKLMN
50%75%***
Blood (first 3 pints)
ABCDF*
GKLMN
50%75%
Part A hospice care coinsurance or copayment
ABCDF*
GKLMN
50%75%
Skilled nursing facility care coinsurance
ABCDF*
  
GKLMN
50%75%
Part A deductible
ABCDF*
 
GKLMN
50%75%75%
Part B deductible
ABCDF*
   
GKLMN
     
Part B excess charges
ABCDF*
    
GKLMN
   N/A
Foreign travel exchange (up to plan limits)
ABCDF*
  80%80%80%
GKLMN
80%  80%80%
Out-of-pocket limit**
ABCDF*
N/AN/AN/AN/AN/A
GKLMN
N/A$4940$2470N/AN/A
Medigap BenefitsABCDF*GKLMN
Part A coinsurance and hospital costs up to an additional 365 days after Medicare benefits are used up
Part B coinsurance or copayment50%75%***
Blood (first 3 pints)50%75%
Part A hospice care coinsurance or copayment50%75%
Skilled nursing facility care coinsurance  50%75%
Part A deductible 50%75%75%
Part B deductible        
Part B excess charges       N/A
Foreign travel exchange (up to plan limits)  80%80%80%80%  80%80%
Out-of-pocket limit**N/AN/AN/AN/AN/AN/A$4940$2470N/AN/A

View full chart »

If you are a resident of Massachusetts, Minnesota, or Wisconsin your plan options are standardized differently.
Source: Medicare.gov

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Where does a Medigap Plan fit into my Medicare Coverage?


A Medigap plan works with your Original Medicare and helps pay for out-of-pocket costs like copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles associated with your Medicare Part A and Part B services. You cannot enroll in a Medigap plan if you have coverage through a Medicare Advantage plan.

A Medigap plan works with your Original Medicare to help cover the gaps.

Why choose a Medicare Supplement Plan?


Adding Medicare Supplement coverage to your Original Medicare helps pay for out-of-pocket costs like copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles associated with your Medicare Part A and Part B services. Depending on the type of Medicare Supplement plan you choose it may also include coverage for medical expenses while traveling abroad, which is not included with Original Medicare alone.

Who’s eligible for a Medicare Supplement Plan?

To be eligible for a Medigap policy you must be enrolled in both Part A and Part B of Original Medicare.

When can I enroll in a Medicare Supplement Plan?


Medigap Open Enrollment Period

You can first enroll in a Medicare Supplement Plan during your Medigap Open Enrollment Period (OEP). Your Medigap OEP lasts for 6 months and starts the first day of the month of your 65th birthday and are enrolled in Medicare Part B. Your Medigap OEP provides you with 3 very important benefits:

  1. You are guaranteed enrollment in the Medigap plan of your choice (as long as it is available in your area).
  2. You cannot be charged more because you have pre-existing conditions.
  3. Your coverage starts immediately.

If you miss your Medigap Open Enrollment Period

If you wait to enroll and miss your Open Enrollment Period you might not be able to enroll in a Medigap Plan. If you are able to enroll, your application may be subject to medical underwriting which may increase your monthly plan premium.

Check your eligibility and find Medicare options available to you by speaking to one of our licensed insurance agents.
Mon-Fri, 8AM - 8PM ET Sat-Sun, Closed
When deciding between plans you should take into account the deductible, drug formulary, copays and the premium to find the right combination of benefits and costs to best fit your lifestyle. We're here to walk you through it.

How much do Medicare Supplement Plans cost?


In addition to your location, the cost of a Medicare Supplement plan premiums can be set in three ways:

Your age when you first sign up for coverage
Your current age
Not age related (everyone pays the same premium)

Also, if you miss your Open Enrollment Period (OEP), your health can be taken into account when your premium is calculated.

Resources
Get your questions answered by using our helpful Medicare tools and resources.