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Why Choose a Medicare Supplement plan?

Summary: Why do so many people buy Medicare Supplement plans? Here are a few possible reasons:

  • They want coverage for their Medicare Part A and Part B out-of-pocket costs, like copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles.
  • They don’t want to be restricted to using doctors in a plan network.
  • They like the fact that once you have a Medicare Supplement plan, it’s guaranteed renewable in most cases.

Let’s say you’ve got traditional Medicare, Part A and Part B. Why would you need a Medicare Supplement plan? This article will help you understand the gaps in traditional Medicare coverage, and how a Medicare Supplement insurance plan may help.

You may have noticed that Medicare Part A (hospital insurance) and Part B (medical insurance) come with out-of-pocket costs. You usually need to pay deductibles, copayments, and/or coinsurance amounts. A Medicare Supplement plan can help cover these costs.

Medicare Supplement plans: coordination of benefits with Medicare

A Medicare Supplement plan is designed to work alongside Medicare Part A and Part B. You may be able to buy a Medicare Supplement plan that generally pays the out-of-pocket costs of Part A and Part B. These plans are sold by private insurance companies.

These Medicare out-of-pocket costs might include Medicare deductibles, coinsurance, and copayments. These expenses can really add up, especially if you are hospitalized, need inpatient rehabilitation, or require skilled nursing facility care. A Medicare Supplement plan might serve as a kind of safety net.

Medicare Supplement plans: get some freedom of choice in doctors

Most Medicare Supplement plans don’t limit you to provider networks. Generally, you can use any doctor or hospital that accepts Medicare payment terms (called “assignment”).

You may be able to purchase a Medicare Supplement plan (Plan G, for example) that pays Medicare Part B excess charges. These are costs that doctors can charge you in some cases if they don’t accept Medicare assignment.

Medicare Supplement plans: convenience and portability

Medicare Supplement plans are standardized. This means that all Medicare Supplement plans of a particular type offer the same basic benefits regardless of the insurance company selling it. In most states, Medicare Supplement plans are named by an alphabetical label—A, B, C, D, F, G, K, L, M, or N. Massachusetts, Minnesota, and Wisconsin have their own standardized Medicare Supplement plans.

You might be pleasantly surprised to find how easy it is to compare Medicare Supplement plans. Even though every Medicare Supplement plan of the same name (like Medicare Supplement Plan G) has the same basic benefits, their premiums may vary. So, it may be wise to compare plans. Just enter your zip code on this page to get started.

You can generally use your Medicare Supplement plan benefits anywhere in the United States—when you travel and even if you relocate. Some Medicare Supplement plan types may even cover limited emergency medical care when you’re out of the country.

Medicare Supplement plans: guaranteed issue and renewability

If you purchase a Medicare Supplement plan when you are first eligible, you typically have guaranteed-issue rights to buy a plan. This means that an insurer cannot turn down your application or charge you a higher premium because of your age or health condition. Learn more about the Medicare Supplement Open Enrollment Period.

If you apply for a Medicare Supplement insurance at a later date, in many states you could be charged more, or even rejected, if you have health problems.

Generally once you have a Medicare Supplement plan, your coverage is renewable each year.

Find Medicare Supplement plans where you live. Simply enter your zip code and click on the button on this page.

The product and service descriptions, if any, provided on these eHealth web pages are not intended to constitute offers to sell or solicitations in connection with any product or service. All products are not available in all areas and are subject to applicable laws, rules, and regulations.

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