You can choose from various supplemental insurance options if you’re a senior and eligible for Medicare. These work alongside your regular Medicare coverage to ensure you have the best care without breaking the bank.
These plans are designed to provide additional coverage in certain areas where Medicare might leave you exposed. Here is an overview of your options:
What Is Medigap?
The most widely-known form of Medicare supplemental insurance is Medigap. The term Medigap comes from the first letters in “Medical” and “Guaranteed”. People usually buy Medigap in addition to traditional Medicare.
But if you have a chronic illness or a disability, you may be able to get Medigap as a standalone plan without having to also enroll in Medicare. What are the different types of Medigap Plans? Medigap plans come in 10 standard variations called “tiers.” Each tier offers an extra level of coverage, and each has its own set of rules and restrictions.
Medicare Supplement Insurance (Msa)
Like Medigap, MSA is a standardized plan. But it can be tailored to your specific needs and situation. Because MSA is a standardized plan, it comes with a set of benefits that are specified in your policy. If you are applying for one of these plans, you’ll need to meet certain eligibility criteria—and you may also be required to take a medical exam.
You can select any MSA plan that covers the same basic benefits as Medicare—in other words, any plan that covers the gaps in Medicare coverage.
Health Maintenance Organization (Hmo) Plan
Because these are standardized plans, you’ll need to meet certain eligibility criteria—and you may be required to take a medical exam. Plan HMOs often have lower premiums than MSA plans, so they’re a great option if you are on a budget.
However, they may have higher out-of-pocket costs if you have to pay for any services that fall outside of your plan’s coverage.
Medicare Advantage Plan
This plan will only be available to you if you are deemed “fully enrolled” in Medicare—that is, you have signed up for Medicare Parts A and B, and you are not receiving any private health insurance. You can enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan at any time, either by requesting information from your state’s Medicare exchange or by directly contacting the insurance providers that offer these plans.
Because Medicare Advantage plans are standardized, you’ll need to find one that covers the same benefits as traditional Medicare.
Exclusive Provider Organization (Epo) Plan
Like Medicare Advantage plans, EPOs are standardized plans that can be applied for at any time. You can enroll in an EPO at any time, either by requesting information from your state’s Medicare exchange or by directly contacting the insurance providers that offer these plans.
Because EPOs are standardized plans, you’ll need to find one that covers the same benefits as traditional Medicare. Because these plans usually have lower premiums than MSA or HMO plans, they are a great choice for those on a budget.
If you are eligible for Medicare, you should consider enrolling in a supplemental insurance plan. Not only will this provide you with extra coverage, but it can also help keep your out-of-pocket costs low. By choosing the right plan for your needs, you can rest assured that you will be protected if you ever need extra medical care or treatment. Click HERE to learn more.