Medigap Plan G – What It Covers and Why It Makes Sense

Medigap Plan G is one of the often-overlooked Medicare Supplement plans. Most agent and consumers look to Plan F, which is the most common and comprehensive plan, first. However, Plan G is a great plan and is very similar to Medigap Plan F (only one benefit difference). For that reason, I believe Plan G to be, in most cases, the most advantageous Medigap choice.

So, what does Plan G cover? Well, in short, it covers everything that Plan F covers with one exception. The exception is the Medicare Part B deductible. For 2017, this deductible is $183/year. Other than not covering that deductible, Plan G is absolutely identical to Medicare Supplement Plan F.

The benefits that G includes are: Basic Benefits (20% coinsurance, hospice coverage and blood), skilled nursing facility coinsurance, Part A deductible, Part B excess charges, and foreign travel emergency. These benefits are part of every Plan G because Medigap plans are standardized.

Since the coverage of the Part B deductible is the only difference, it is very easy to compare Plan F and Plan G. If you divide the deductible amount by 12 months, you get the figure $15.25/month. This is the “benefit difference” between the two plans, since all other benefits are identical. So if a Plan G is $20 less than a Plan F, it just makes sense.

Also, and this is something that many people do not realize, Plan G has historically been more rate-stable than Plan F. The primary reasons for this is Plan F is required to be offered on a “guaranteed issue” basis in several situations (i.e. losing employer coverage, losing Advantage plan coverage, etc.). Plan G, on the contrary, is not required to be “guaranteed issue” in these situations. What this means is that Plan F must accept people, regardless of pre-existing conditions, that fall into one of these situations. So on average, the people on Plan F could be less healthier than the people on Plan G, because to get Plan G (unless you are in open enrollment), you would have had to qualify medically. Less healthy people can lead to more claims, and rate increases are based on claims in a certain geographic area.

Lastly, in 2014, legislation passed that set an “end date” to the full coverage Medigap plans, including Plan F. These plans will no longer be available after 2020. At that point, the plans that are no longer available to new members will very likely be less stable over time than other options, including Plan G.

Altogether, Plan G is a great option. While many agents “push” Plan F, doing some simple math can show you that Plan G is more advantageous to you in most cases. If you have questions about Medicare Supplement plans or want to get Medicare supplement quotes, please contact us via our website.

What Is a Medicare Supplement?

What is a Medicare Supplement? The question seems simple enough. However, if you are turning 65 or going on Medicare for the first time, it can seem a little overwhelming. You are, no doubt, getting inundated with information in the mail and computer, maybe even phone calls. There is a lot of information out there, and much of it is confusing – I would even say some of it has the end-goal in mind of confusing you. But the basic foundation of understanding Medicare Supplements is understanding what they are and what they are not.

First of all, what are they? They are plans sold by private insurance companies to fill in gaps in the Federal Medicare program (Medicare Parts A and B). These plans are Federally-standardized – in other words, the government says what they must cover. There are 10 standardized plans, which are named for letters (i.e. A, F, G, N). Each plan covers different amount of “gaps” in Medicare. Here is the coverage chart that shows what they cover: Medigap coverage chart. The individual companies set their pricing, and this can vary a good bit (although the coverage is the same on “like” plans). Also, rates vary by your age and location.

These plans pay claims automatically through the Medicare “crossover” system so you do not have to file claims. Also, they can be used at any doctor/hospital that takes Medicare, which is still your primary insurance (the Medicare Supplement is secondary). The plans are sometimes called Medigap plans. The terms “Medigap” and “Medicare Supplement” are interchangeable.

So, what are Medicare Supplements NOT? Put simply, the type of plans that replace Medicare A & B, called Medicare Advantage plans, are NOT Medicare Supplements. These plans are not supplements to Medicare, but rather replacements of Medicare. Also Medicare Part D plans (the Rx coverage part of Medicare) are technically not Medicare Supplements.

Secondly, employer-type plans are generally not Medicare Supplements. They may pay secondary to Medicare and act as a supplement, but in most cases, they don’t fall under the standardized plans structure of actual Medicare Supplements.

It is important to understand the differences in terminology between Medicare Supplements and other similar types of plans. It is important to know, also, that some agents/companies may try to call their plan a Medicare Supplement, when in reality it is not. Whenever possible, we recommend using an independent broker that can assist you (for no charge) with comparing all companies and plan types.

If you have questions or wish to discuss further, please call us at 877.506.3378 or request information on our website at http://medicare-supplement.us/medicare-supplement-quotes.php.

Medigap Plan G – The Smart Alternative to Plan F

Medigap Plan G is a smart alternative to Plan F. While many agents and agencies push Plan F primarily, Plan G is generally a better value if you do the math on the two options. When comparing Medicare Supplement plans, it is important to look at all the options and understand the plan differences. In doing so, you will see that there is only one benefit difference between the two plans – Plan F and Plan G. Understanding this benefit difference is the first step to comparing these two plans.

There are several reasons why Plan G is a better value than many of the other plan options, which we’ve spelled out below:

  1. First and foremost, it is a better value, in most cases. The math is simple to do. The only benefit difference between Plan G and Plan F is the coverage of the Medicare Part B deductible. For 2011, this deductible is $162/year. Typically, you will the premium savings on Plan G to be approximately $15-20/month. In an example, if the premium savings is $20/month, then you would spend an extra $162/year (if you go to the doctor) in exchange for saving $240/year. It just makes sense.
  2. The second major advantage to having Plan G is that rates are historically more stable over time with Plan G than with many of the alternatives. The reason for this is simple to understand. Plans F and C, and several others, are required to be offered (by all companies) on a “guaranteed issue” basis when you are losing employer coverage or Advantage plan coverage. Because companies cannot underwrite those plans in these situations, the people on the plans are, on average, less healthy than people on some of the other plans, like Plan G, that are not required to be offered on a “guaranteed issue” basis in these situations. Less healthy people leads to more claims, which leads to larger and/or more frequent rate increases.

For these two primary reasons, you will find that Plan G is a great alternative to other plans like the Plan F. While many people will push for the Plan F, do the math yourself and make an informed decision. I believe you will find that Medigap Plan G is often the way to go. If you have any questions about which plan is right for you or if you want to get a Medicare Supplement quote, please contact using our website: Quotes from Medicare-Supplement.US .

Medicare Supplement – The Wave of the Future

Medicare Supplement insurance is the wave of the future for those turning 65 in the next few years, including the Baby Boomers who are reaching Medicare eligibility starting this year. Here are the top three reasons why we believe Medicare Supplements are the wave of the future:

  1. First and foremost, they put a limit on your out of pocket exposure. What many people do not realize is that Medicare has no limit on out of pocket exposure. In other words, if you rack up a huge medical bill and have only Medicare insurance, you pay an unlimited 20%. There is no “cap” on what you would have to pay. The main thing that a Medicare Supplement plan does is to eliminate that unlimited amount and put a cap on your “exposure” to medical costs.
  2. Secondarily, they provide predictable out of pocket expenses. With a Medicare Supplement, you can know, in advance, your medical costs for the year, down to the penny. This is simply not possible with other types of health insurance or at other stages in your life. This kind of predictability and stability, especially when you are over 65, is priceless. Essentially, with most of the Medicare Supplement plans, you just pay the monthly premium then you have no additional out of pocket costs. Even on the plans that do have some deductibles or co-pays that are not covered, you can add those on to the premium to figure your total out of pocket costs for the year.
  3. The ever-increasing costs of medical care and treatment. Medical costs continue to skyrocket. What else can you think of that you don’t know the cost of something until it is completed. There is no “menu”, when going to the doctor’s office. You are dealing with your health and simply cannot base your decisions on price. However, these costs can be exorbitant and they are certainly continuing to rise. Medical inflation has generally outpaced inflation in other arenas by a good bit and most believe it will continue to do so. What this means is that you should seek to limit your “exposure” to this, when possible. A Medicare Supplement plan makes this possible.

Altogether, Medicare Supplement insurance allows you to limit your exposure, have predictable expenses, and avoid the ever-increasing health care costs. For these reasons, it is essential for those 65 and over to have some sort of Medicare supplement plan. If you want more information or Medicare supplement quotes, please visit our website to learn more.

Medicare Supplemental Guide – How To Choose a Plan That is Right for You

Choosing a Medicare Supplemental plan is extremely important to your financial well-being if you are over 65 and/or on Medicare. There are literally hundreds of options available to you, so you must take an inventory of what you need, compare it against what is available and make a sound decision that will be beneficial to you.

The very first step in this process is to get Medicare supplemental quotes from a reputable source like an independent brokerage. This way, you can have all of the information in a centralized place for easy comparison.

The second step that you should follow when comparing supplemental options is to understand the plan differences. Medicare Supplement plans are Federally-standardized. This means that all companies are required to offer the exact same coverage plans, which makes actually comparing the plans relatively easy to do. A Plan F, for example, which is the most common and comprehensive plan, covers everything that Medicare doesn’t cover at the doctor and hospital so that you don’t have any out of pocket costs. So, once you have your quotes, it is easy to compare among plans.

You may find that a lower-tier plan makes more sense for you. After all, the Plan F is the most comprehensive, but it is also the most expensive. Lower-tier plans, such as Plans G and N, often make a lot of sense, particularly if you are in good health or on a fixed income. These plans can provide great premiums savings that offset the small out of pocket costs that come with this slightly lower level of coverage.

The last step in this process is to look at companies, based on price. Since the coverage is the same, you must use price as a primary comparison tool. There is no sense in paying more for the same thing, unless you just have money to burn or don’t mind doing so. The way to go, when it comes to Medicare Supplement insurance, is to choose the option that is the lowest premium for the plan that you want.

To get a Medicare supplement comparison or get quotes on Medicare supplements, please contact us on our website.