Best Medigap Plans
Finding the most ideal medical coverage can be overwhelming. Some people will just choose the most popular option while others opt for a plan that the industry experts consider the best plans. But doing either of these will not help you find the best Medigap plans for your situation. And we’re here to help you with that. We will discuss in-depth the Medigap plans that are available and what they cover so you can sign up for a plan that suits you best.
But first, let us define what Medigap is.
What is Medigap?
Medigap is also known as Medicare Supplements. They are plans that can help you cope with the medical expenses left by Original Medicare. You need to purchase a traditional Medicare before you can use a Medigap plan. It is not possible to sign up for a Medigap plan without traditional Medicare.
Medicare allows you to sign up for both Medicare Supplement and Original Medicare at the same time. But there are medical insurance plans that overlap with Medigap. If that is the case, then you must either cancel the Medigap or the other health plan.
One of the health plans that overlap with Medigap is Medicare Advantage. That said, if you have an MA plan, you can’t sign up for one of the Medigap policies. You should compare what Medicare covers and find out if there are other plans you have that will intersect with Medigap’s coverage.
Medicare designed 10 Medigap plans. Some plans have variations. But no health insurance providers will sell all ten of them. In that case, you need to pick the plan that you wish to purchase and choose the health provider that sells it at an affordable rate.
Each plan will cover different items. Although they overlap with one another, the plans differ in some way. You can find plans with low coverage while others have lots of coverage. Since they overlap, you can’t purchase two at a time. You can only choose one.
Despite having different coverage, the plans get coverage from the same set of stuff. We will list those things here so you will know what coverage the plans will cover. Medicare determines what coverage the plans will include. It also changes the coverage at any time. In that case, you should pay attention to the changes before you even sign up for one of them.
Medigap plans cover coinsurance for Part A and Part B. It is a copayment that you need to pay each time you visit a doctor or a medical facility and under a Part A or Part B service. You must settle this payment only if your Medigap plan does not cover it.
Part A and Part B have yearly deductibles. And they can also be covered by Medigap plans. This is useful because the yearly deductible of Part A is quite high. Thankfully, it is covered by many Medicare plans.
Part B yearly deductible, on the other hand, is quite smaller. Thus, only a couple of plans will cover it. The amount is $183 a few times a year. With such a small amount, it is just cheaper to sign up with a plan that doesn’t have Part B deductible. It is more economical that way than having it covered by the plan, which only makes the plan expensive.
You can also find a couple of Medicare Supplements that will cover you for Part B excess charges. But this is a rare expense and it only happens if you go to a medical facility that doesn’t accept Medicare as a form of payment. Because of that, the majority of Medicare Supplements don’t cover it.
Medigap plans will also cover you for the first three pints of blood per year. It is a medical expense that you need if you undergo a surgical procedure. Although Original Medicare covers this expense, it only does so after you have paid for the first three bags. Original Medicare and Medicare Supplements do not overlap in any way.
If you need medical transport to a foreign country, then a Medigap plan will cover it. However, you must know that the entire cost is not fully covered. Rather, a Medigap plan will only pay 80% for every incident. Furthermore, there is a deductible for this item if it is part of your plan.
Medigap plans may also cover hospice care coinsurance. You will pay for this expense each time you need hospice care. And if you need skilled nursing care, the coinsurance will also be covered.
These are the expenses that Medigap plans will cover. Some plans will cover some of them. There is only one plan that will include all of these expenses into one policy and that’s Plan F.
What Health Insurance Providers are Selling Medigap?
Medicare designed the Medigap plans. However, it doesn’t sell them. Rather, you can only purchase them through private health insurance companies. Because several companies offer them, you have different options on where you can purchase the plans from.
You should only purchase the plan from a health insurance provider that operates in your area. But before you purchase any of the plans, you must ensure that you make a comparison shopping. Consider finding the lowest-priced version of the policy that will suit you best.
Health insurance providers that sell these plans can choose what rates they get to charge their clients. But they must follow the coverage set by Medicare. They have to abide by the rules of Medicare regarding the coverage plans.
You can purchase the best Medigap plans from most of the health insurers we discuss here. We will only talk about a few of the better companies. However, it doesn’t mean that they are your only options. To help you find the best deal, you need to compare the prices and companies that sell the plans that you like.
It is one of the largest health insurance companies offering senior health insurance. Humana goes above and beyond to ensure that its subscribers will only get the best plans. It also offers some perks that will help its members live well.
For many years, seniors choose AARP over other health insurance companies. It is known to offer its members a variety of health insurance options and excellent member benefits. If you choose an AARP Medigap plan, then you can access exclusive services that you can’t find anywhere else. AARP offers plans to seniors.
It is another large insurer that offers tons of options. Cigna is most known for its online services. Its clients can easily track their accounts and know more about their coverage through Cigna’s online portal. They can also make changes to their coverage while on the go.
It is a unique company with several offices around the United States. Thus, it is likely that you can find a BCBS office in your location. But each office operates separately. It also offers a variety of services, plans, and prices.
Applying for Medigap
Signing up for a Medigap plan requires that you apply at the right time. There is an open enrollment period when you can enroll in one of the plans. It starts on October 15 and ends on December 7. It is the best time to enroll or change your Medigap plan.
During the open enrollment period, you are guaranteed approval. Furthermore, you can also get the best rates, despite having a pre-existing condition.
The reason for this is that your medical condition will not be considered by your health insurance company in determining your rates. In that case, your poor health will not be a detriment to getting a better rate. However, if you missed this period, you may either get a higher rate or you will be denied coverage when you decide to apply.
When signing up for a plan, you should submit your application directly to the health insurance provider that you wish to purchase the plan from. In that case, if you want a BCBS plan, then apply at its website.
You can fill out its form online. Make sure that you enter the correct details. Once you get approved, you will sign the agreement plan before you can start making payments. After that, you can begin getting the coverage you signed up for.
However, before you can even apply for a Medigap plan, you need to be at least 65 years old. However, if you have a disability or suffer from kidney disease, then you can apply for it even if you are younger than 65.
The Best Medigap Plans
Unfortunately, there is no one plan that is best for everyone. You must first determine the plan’s coverage and compare it to your actual medical needs. That’s why we encourage you to compare the plans and pick the ones that will cover the majority of medical expenses.
Here are some of the Medigap plans that are worth mentioning. They offer a lot of value and they provide the best options for a huge percentage of seniors.
As mentioned earlier, it is the only Medigap plan that will give you full coverage. It means that it will cover all the expenses we mentioned above.
Plan F is a robust coverage that’s why it is a popular choice. However, it has now been delisted because it is too expensive. Other plans will cover you for items but they are available at cheaper rates.
High Deductible Plan F
It is a variation of Plan F. It is the same as Plan F. The only difference is the cost. It has a lower monthly premium than the regular plan F.
But with lower monthly premium means that you need to pay more for the deductible. Nevertheless, it is still a good option for seniors who wish to purchase a complete coverage.
It is the same as Plan F. However, it is no a full-coverage plan. It includes all items mentioned above but not the Part B deductible.
Then again, this is a small expense that you can easily pay on your own. As mentioned earlier, it will only cost you $183. In that case, it is better to pay for it on your own than having it covered by your plan. And many seniors have relied on it now. As a result, Plan G is not the most popular Medigap plan.
Just like the other two plans mentioned, Plan N is also a high coverage policy. It covers nearly every supplemental expense we have talked about earlier. The only things that it doesn’t include would be Part B deductible and Part B excess charges.
But Part B deductible is only a small amount that won’t cost you a fortune. Furthermore, the excess charges are rare expenses. You will also need to cover a few small copayments now and again.
These three options are considered as the best Medigap plans. But there are other plans out there that you can choose from if these plans are not ideal in your situation.
You need to decide the best plan for you. Don’t rush into buying a Medigap plan. Make sure that you compare the plans first before you make a final choice. You may use our website to help you get free quotes so you can start comparing them.
Saving Money on Medigap
As mentioned earlier, there is no one plan that is best for every senior. The best plan will still depend on your actual needs. Make sure that the plan is affordable. Don’t pick a policy that will provide you a high coverage but you can’t even afford to pay for it every month.
When you study all the plans available, you will find that there are low-priced versions of the plans. These low-priced versions involve higher deductible and low monthly premiums.
But they provide the same coverage as the regular plan. Thus, if you wish to save money on Medigap, make sure to consider the low-priced version.
To help you find it, make sure that you compare the pricing of the plan. You may use our price comparison tool to help you search for the plans that are ideal for you. Our tool will give you free quotes and the quotes are updated.
But don’t just focus on the rates of the plans. Rather, you must pick a plan from a reputable company. In that way, it will not be too difficult for you to make a claim later on. The reputation of the health insurer is as important as the price of the plan.
When you compare the plans first before you make a final decision, we can guarantee you that you will save a lot of money and time in finding the most ideal plan. You can get the most affordable price for the best Medigap plans.