Medicare Supplement plans can help cover many of the out-of-pocket expenses for your Medicare Part A and Part B care, but they do not cover your Medicare premiums. Plans can help cover Part A coinsurance and hospital costs, Part B copayments and coinsurance, three pints of blood used in a medical procedure, skilled nursing facility care, hospice care, the Part A deductible, the Part B deductible, Part B excess charges, and foreign travel emergency care.
What Are Medicare Supplement Plans?
Medicare Supplement plans are policies that cover some or all of the costs for certain expenses you would have had to pay out-of-pocket for Medicare Part A and Part B. There are 10 available Medicare Supplement plans, which are lettered A, B, C, D, F, G, K, L, M, and N.
Each plan has a different amount of coverage. Once you pay the supplement plan deductible, the policy will reimburse you for covered expenses. Coverage can include deductibles, coinsurance, and copayments for Medicare, but you still have to pay your Part A and Part B monthly premiums while you have a supplement plan.
What Can Medicare Supplement Plans Cover?
All Medicare Supplement plans provide coverage for the following:
- Part A coinsurance costs
- Part A hospice care copayments or coinsurance
- Part B copayments or coinsurance
- First three pints of blood used in a medical procedure
Some supplement plans provide additional coverage for some of the following expenses:
- Part A deductible
- Part B excess charges
- Part B deductible
- Part B preventive care coinsurance
- Foreign travel emergency care
- Skilled Nursing Facility care coinsurance
Plans C and F, which cover the Part B deductible, are only available to people who became eligible for Medicare before 2020.
What Are the Costs of Medicare Supplement Plans?
When you purchase a Medicare Supplement plan, you can expect to pay monthly or annual premiums. You will need to continue paying your premiums to keep your policy in force.
In addition, you will need to pay a deductible before the insurance pays its share, as with most health coverage. Two plans, K and L, have an out-of-pocket maximum. Once you have reached that maximum, your policy will pay for your covered out-of-pocket Medicare expenses in full.
Who Can Purchase a Medicare Supplement Plan?
Insurance companies sell Medicare Supplement plans to people who are enrolled in Original Medicare and 65 or older. You cannot have both a Medicare Supplement plan and a Medicare Advantage plan, so you should go over your options with a Medicare professional before choosing your coverage. Medicare Supplement plans are sold to individuals, so each partner in a married couple needs their own plan.
If you have Medicare and are under the age of 65, you may have to wait until you reach senior age to buy a policy. Insurers are not required to sell policies to people under 65 and if they do your premiums may be higher.
When Can You Enroll in a Medicare Supplement Plan?
The best time to enroll in a Medicare Supplement plan is during your Medicare Supplement Open Enrollment. This is a six-month time period that begins once you are 65 and enrolled in Medicare Part B.
During this time, you will not have to go through medical underwriting in order to buy a policy. An insurance company cannot deny you a policy because of pre-existing or present conditions when you apply.
For help choosing the right Medicare Supplement for your needs, contact World Financial Solutions. We can match you with the best policy for your anticipated health expenses and your budget.