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In Idaho, as in most other states, Medicare Supplement insurance plans cover certain costs not paid for by Original Medicare, Part A and Part B. Also known as Medigap, these plans may cover Original Medicare out-of-pocket costs such as coinsurance, copayments, and deductibles. Some plans may pay for additional costs not covered by Original Medicare, such as emergency medical care outside of the United States, the first three pints of blood, and Medicare Part B excess charges.
Medigap plans are used in combination with your Original Medicare coverage, and you’ll need to remain enrolled in Medicare Part A and Part B for your hospital and medical coverage. Keep in mind that Medicare Supplement insurance plans don’t provide prescription drug coverage. Original Medicare beneficiaries can enroll in a stand-alone Medicare Prescription Drug Plan for help with prescription drug costs.
A Medicare Supplement insurance plan in Idaho, like the rest of the country, is different from a Medicare Advantage plan. Medicare Advantage plans are an alternative way to get Original Medicare benefits and may provide additional benefits, such as routine vision and dental, or prescription drugs. In contrast, Medigap plans help with certain Original Medicare out-of-pocket expenses, but beneficiaries still get their Medicare coverage through Original Medicare, Part A and Part B. Medicare Supplement insurance isn’t meant to provide stand-alone coverage.
In addition, keep in mind that Medicare Supplement insurance plans can only be used to pay for Original Medicare costs; these plans can’t be used to pay for out-of-pocket expenses for Medicare Advantage plans.
Although you can enroll in a Medicare Supplement insurance plan at any time, the best time for Idaho beneficiaries to do so is during their Medigap Open Enrollment Period. This is the six-month period when you’re first eligible for Medicare Supplement insurance; it starts automatically as soon as you’re 65 or older and enrolled in Medicare Part B.
During the Medigap Open Enrollment Period, Idaho beneficiaries can enroll in any Medicare Supplement insurance plan with guaranteed issue. This means that insurance companies offering Medicare Supplement insurance plans are prohibited from requiring medical underwriting, and cannot charge higher premiums based on medical history, regardless of pre-existing health conditions. After the Medigap Open Enrollment Period has passed, Medigap insurance companies are allowed to charge higher premiums or deny coverage to beneficiaries based on their medical status. If you have health problems or disabilities, it may be more difficult to enroll in a Medigap plan or switch plans once your Medigap Open Enrollment Period has passed.
Like most other states, Medicare Supplement insurance plans in Idaho are categorized by plan type. There are 10 standardized plans available, and each plan type is labeled by a letter that corresponds with a different level of coverage (for example, Plan A). All plans that fall under that letter category offer identical benefits. The only difference between plans of the same letter is cost, which can vary by insurance company.
If you’re looking for a Medicare Supplement insurance plan in Idaho, you may want to start by deciding which plan type fits the level of coverage you need. From there, shop around and compare plans in your location, so that you can find your Medigap coverage for the lowest premium cost.
eHealth's Medicare website is operated by eHealthInsurance Services, Inc., a licensed health insurance agency doing business as eHealth. The purpose of this site is the solicitation of insurance. Contact may be made by an insurance agent/producer or insurance company. eHealth and Medicare supplement insurance plans are not connected with or endorsed by the U.S. government or the federal Medicare program. We offer plans from a number of insurance companies.