Every Medicare supplement insurance plans are standardized policies identified in most states by letters. Each plan must follow state and federal laws that are designed to protect its beneficiaries. All policies offer the same basic benefits, and some provide additional coverage to better suit your needs. You have to compare Medicare supplement plans to find which one is best for you. If you live in Massachusetts, Minnesota, or Wisconsin, the plans in these states are standardized differently.
The Medicare Supplement Plans Comparison Chart
Most people turning 65 or older should compare plans before they enroll in a policy. Often, the task can be confusing and overwhelming. To make comparing easier, you can use a Medicare supplement plans comparison chart which shows the benefits that each plan covers laid in a neat table. Using the chart, you can compare plans side by side and find the best Medicare Supplement that will best fit your needs.
How to use the Medigap comparison chart
The “Yes” means that the plan covers 100% of the benefits. The number of percentage in the chart means that the Medigap plan covers that percentage of the benefit. “No” means the Medigap plan does not cover the benefit. N/A means the benefit is not applicable.
For more in-depth information, click on each letter.
|Medigap Benefits||Medigap Plans|
|Part A coinsurance and hospital costs up to an additional 365 days after Medicare benefits are used up||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Part B coinsurance or copayment||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||50%||75%||Yes||Yes***|
|Blood (first 3 pints)||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||50%||75%||Yes||Yes|
|Part A hospice care coinsurance or copayment||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||50%||75%||Yes||Yes|
|Skilled nursing facility care coinsurance||No||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||50%||75%||Yes||Yes|
|Part A deductible||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||50%||75%||50%||Yes|
|Part B deductible||No||No||Yes||No||Yes||No||No||No||No||No|
|Part B excess charge||No||No||No||No||Yes||Yes||No||No||No||No|
|Foreign travel exchange (up to plan limits)||No||No||80%||80%||80%||80%||No||No||80%||80%|
Yes = the plan covers 100% of this benefit
No = the policy doesn’t cover that benefit
% = the plan covers that percentage of this benefit
N/A = not applicable
The Medigap policy covers coinsurance only after you’ve paid the deductible (unless the Medigap policy also pays the deductible).
*Plan F is a high deductible plan. If you decide to enroll in this option this 2018, you must pay the Medicare-covered costs up to the deductible amount of $2,240 before Medigap plan works or pay anything.
**The Medigap plan will pay 100% of covered services for the rest of the year once you meet your out-of-pocket yearly limit and your yearly Part B deductible.
***Plan N pays 100% of the Part B coinsurance. A copayment of up to 20% for some office visits and up to 50% copayment for emergency room visits that don’t result in inpatient admission are not included.
10 Things To Keep In Mind When Comparing Medigap Plans
Here are things that you need to keep in mind when comparing the types of Medicare Supplements:
- Medigap plans are standardized. Insurance companies may set their prices differently from one another, but the benefits of the plans are the same.
- It is best to buy a Medigap insurance plan during your open enrollment period.
- To enroll in a Medicare Supplement plan, you must already have Medicare Part A and Part B (Original Medicare).
- Insurance companies who offer Medigap plans may decide what types they only want to sell. Not all of them provides all the ten plans. But there are state laws that can affect which ones they sell.
- You can use your Medigap insurance policy to any doctor or health care provider as long as they accept Medicare.
- Medigap plans sold in the past have prescription drug coverage. But policies sold after January 1, 2006, don’t include prescription drug coverage anymore. If you want one, you can enroll in a Medicare Part D.
- Medicare Supplement costs are affected by different factors. Learn more about it here.
- You don’t pay your licensed insurance agent, should you decide to seek their assistance.
- Medicare Supplement plan is different from Medicare Advantage plans
- The monthly premium you pay to the private insurance company for your Medigap plan is different from the premium you are paying to Medicare for your Medicare Part B coverage.