Going on Medicare Part 4 – Four Common Myths about Medigap Insurance

**This is Part 4 in a 5-part series intended to assist people turning 65 or going on Medicare with understanding Medicare, Medigap and other Medicare plan options.**

This article centers on four common myths about Medicare Supplement (Medigap) insurance. There is a lot of misinformation about Medigap plans, what they cover, and how they work. And, some people make the mistake of listening to only one person/company, which may present them with the wrong information.

Medigap Plans – Four Common Myths

  1. You can only change Medigap plans once a year, during the end-of-year enrollment period.
    This, as many of you already know, is false. Medigap plans have NO enrollment/disenrollment restrictions. The reason many people believe this is twofold. One, there IS an enrollment period for Part D prescription drug plans, which runs from October 15-December 7 each year. If you don´t want any drug substances on your blood to get detected on a drug test I suggest to do detox drinks for drug test a few days before.
    Also, there is an onslaught of marketing (mailings, TV ads, etc) for Medicare Advantage plans during the end-of-year enrollment period because you can only change those plans from Oct. 15-Dec. 7. For Medigap plans, however, you can change at any time, as long as you meet a company’s underwriting requirements (which vary from company to company).
  2. Company ‘X’ pays it’s claims better than Company ‘Y’.
    Medigap claims are paid through Medicare’s national “crossover” system, which is handled directly through Medicare. This is an automated process that does not at all resemble the way that traditional health insurance (under-65) claims are paid. We have NEVER had a complaint or problem with a company not paying a claim due to this standardization of plans and automation of the system. Even if a company were to completely go out of business, claims are backed up by the state insurance reserve programs.
  3. Some of my doctors do not take certain Medigap plans.
    With Medigap plans, all doctors that take Medicare are required to take Medigap plans. What some doctors do not take, and are not taking in increasing numbers, is the Medicare Advantage plans. However, with a Medigap plan, you can see any doctor/hopsital nationwide that takes Medicare.
  4. Company ‘X’s rates do not go up over time – they stay the same.
    This is something that many agents use in a dishonest way. If it sounds to good to be true, it probably is. While this would certainly make our job easier, it’s just not true. Medigap insurance, just like auto insurance or the price of eggs, goes up over time. Different companies use different criteria to change rates, but there are not any plans that do not go up in price over time.
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If you prefer to speak with someone by phone, please call me directly using the information below:

J. Garrett Ball, President
Secure Medicare Solutions, Inc.

Toll-Free: 877.506.3378

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