The ABCs of Medicare Supplement Plans

As it was already explained, Medigap plans help paying some of the costs Original Medicare does not cover, such as coinsurances, copayments and deductibles. Previously, we talked about some characteristics of these plans and the definition of the costs they cover, so in this article we will explain the general coverage of Medigap plans and the benefits that are not covered by them.

     What do Medicare Supplement Plans cover?

     Although each Aetna Medicare supplement Plan G is different, all of them must cover at least a portion of the following benefits: Medicare Part A coinsurance costs up to an additional 365 days after Medicare benefits have run out, Medicare Part A hospice coinsurance or copayment, Medicare Part B coinsurance or copayment and the first three pints of blood used in a medical procedure.

The four benefits mentioned above are the ones covered in Medigap plan A, which is the most basic Medigap because it only covers those. The rest of the plans may have additional benefits and they will depend on the one you choose.

Regarding Medicare Part A, the rest of Medigap plans may cover: coinsurance for hospital stays, copayment or coinsurance for hospice care and Medicare Part A deductible. The coverage will depend on the plan you choose, but they usually go from 50% to 100%.

Regarding Medicare Part B, the rest of Medigap plans may cover: Medicare Part B copayment or coinsurance, Medicare Part B deductible and Medicare Part B excess charges, which happens when a health care provider declines to accept Medicare assignment for a particular procedure or visit. The deductible is only covered by Plan C and F, and the excess charges only by Plan F and G. In these cases, the coverage also goes from 50% to 100%,

Besides Medicare Part A and B, Medicare Supplement Plans have other benefits. First we have Skilled Nursing Facilities whose coverage is limited by Medicare and the majority of Medigap plans cover the coinsurance for this type of care, from 50% to 100%. Then we have the cost of the first three pints of blood you get at a hospital, which is covered from 50% to 100%. In case you need more, Original Medicare will start paying the pints after the third one.

Some Medigap plans also have foreign travel coverage, which cover emergencies you may have outside of the territory of the U.S. They cover health care services or supplies if the emergency begins during the first 60 days of the trip and they usually pay 80% of the billed charges (up to plan’s limits). This is available in Plans C, D, F, G, M, or N.

Lastly, we have the out-of-pocket limit, which is only covered in Plan K and L. When you reach a certain amount of money in expenses for Medicare-covered, the Medigap plan will cover 100% of Medicare-covered costs for the rest of the year.

     What benefits Medicare Supplement Plans do not cover?

The following services and supplies are not covered by Medicare Supplement Plans:

  • Long-term care (care in a nursing home)
  • Routine vision or dental care
  • Hearing aids
  • Eyeglasses
  • Private-duty nursing

In the past, some Medigap plans covered prescription drugs, but since 2006 Medigap plans are not allowed to do so. As they are not included in Original Medicare, you can get prescription coverage through Medicare Prescription Drug Plan (Part D), but do not get confused, this one is not part of Medigap plans.


Items That Are Not Covered By Medicare Supplement Plans

Before buying any Medicare supplement plan you must be worried about what the items that are covered under these plans are and what are not! Most people buy a Medigap policy without even thinking about the benefits that they will get from it. Thus, here is a comprehensive details that will explain the benefits that are covered under Medicare Supplement and what are not covered.

What do Medicare Supplement plans cover?

Medicare Supplement Plan or the Medigap is designed in order to pay some of the out-of-pocket expenses that incur after receiving coverage from Original Medicare. They are the coinsurance, copayments and deductibles. There are almost 10 supplement plans available and they are named by letters like Medicare Supplement Plan F or Plan G. each plan has different features and they cover different portion of the Medicare expenses.

Like, the Plan A and Plan D of Medicare Supplement Plan covers the Medicare Part B coinsurance and copayment amounts but Plan A will not cover the deductibles under Part A of Medicare, however Plan D generally covers that. In this state you must remember that Part A and Part B or Original Medicare is not same as Plan A and Plan D of Medicare supplement plans. They are totally different.

Before you take any plan under Medigap it is necessary that you understand that which Medicare out-of-pocket costs will be covered by which Plan of Medigap. Also you need to know that which plans covers a portion of the cost of Medicare Part A and Part B. your agent will explain you everything or you may visit their website to learn in details.

What benefits are not covered by Medicare Supplement plans?

It’s true that Medicare supplement plans are sold by private insurance companies but as they are governed by the Federal government you will get same benefits of each plan irrespective of the insurance company you choose. Yes, the premiums may vary from one another.

There are several items that are not covered by Medicare Supplement Plans 2018 even though they mainly involve the payment of out-of-pocket costs of Medicare Part A and part B. some of the items that are not covered under a Medigap policy are

  • Prescription drug coverage
  • Hearing aids
  • Private-duty nursing services
  • Routine dental services
  • Routine vision services
  • Eyeglasses
  • Long-term care

This list is not an extensive list. It mentions only a few items that are not covered. It is best that before taking any policy you get to know about the plan better and then get enrolled.

Benefits Of Medicare Supplement Plans

Another year is here, this means hundreds of thousands of birthdays. It also means that several senior citizens are finally eligible to buy Medicare Plans. Most people are aware of Medicare, others are already on it. Majority of seniors have heard of are already enrolled to Original Medicare Part A or Part B. However, of these, only a surprising 30% are fully aware of Medicare Supplement Plans and what they are intended for. The result of these is a lot of people covering several of their medical bills out-of-pocket once their specific coverages run out.

An unplanned visit today or a doctor’s appointment tomorrow may leave you stuck with a larger than expected bill. However, this should not be the case. There is a way to get the required medical attention while at the same time keeping yourself from bankruptcy. This comes in the form of Medicare Supplement Plans or simply Medigap. There are 10 Medicare Supplement Plans, lettered from A to N.

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Plan A is the core plan and comes with standardized benefits present is all the other plans. However, the other plans are all somewhat unique and have some extra benefits not present in Medigap Plan A. here are some of the core benefits of a Medigap Policy.

Standard Benefits Enjoyed Under Medigap Plans

  1. Original Medicare Restricts the amounts of days you get covered upon hospitalization. Medigap plans offer additional covers and benefits up to a year after your original cover is exhausted.
  2. Medicare Part B comes with a variety of out of pocket costs for both copayments and coinsurance. The Medigap Plans help cover these costs so you don’t have to.
  3. There are procedures that require transfusion of blood. Your Medicare Part A leaves you responsible for the first three pints and then kicks in after. However, Medigap Plans will cover you for the first three before your original Medicare takes over payments.
  4. For patients that require hospice care, Medicare Part A has a coverage restriction on both outpatient drugs and inpatient respite care. However, with Medigap Plans, these costs are covered for you.
  5. There are times when routine hospital visits result in the need for additional testing. Medicare Part B preventative services sometimes fail to cover some of the testings and leave you catering for 20% of the coinsurance. Medigap Plans will take care of the coinsurance for your, reducing your out of pocket costs for medical services.

These are just but the core benefits that Medicare Supplement Plans. Each Medigap Plan from B to N has several other benefits unique to it. This ultimately decides their costs and suitability for an individual. The best thing about Medicare Supplement Plans is that there is something for everyone. It doesn’t matter whether you have deep or shallow pockets, with the right amount of research, you will always get something that helps you across a certain bridge in your quest for quality medical services. So get yourself a Medigap Policy today and enjoy a worry-free retirement.


There has been much prattle and worry about the new health care laws. You yourself might think about how the Affordable Care act will affect you and your Medicare Benefits.


It will satisfy you to realize that the new law won’t cut your Basic benefits. Truth be told, it will really improve a few benefits. The free yearly health checkup is a decent case of this. Beginning 2011, your yearly checkup and certain protection screenings, similar to disease and diabetes will be given at no cost.


The new law will work towards better care when you do become ill by putting resources into testing ways to enhance coordination between suppliers for patients with constant conditions who see various suppliers.


Imagine a scenario where you are hospitalized. Cash talks and Hospitals will get motivations to ensure that you get the training to take great care of yourself and the administrations you require in your group. This will help encourage a fruitful return home. It will likewise enable you to abstain from coming back to the healing center.


Shouldn’t something be said about medication coverage? Uplifting news there too. For those of us on different, exorbitant physician recommended drugs, the Part D doughnut gap poses a potential threat. The law began affecting Medicare Part D in 2010 with the $250 discount for the individuals who went into the coverage hole on their medication plan. In 2011 you will get a half markdown on name mark drugs amid the coverage hole.


Throughout the following nine years the doughnut opening will be shut little by minimal every year. By 2020 there will be no more coverage hole.

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The law likewise addresses the issue of Medicare spending. Medicare spending is developing at a rate of 6.8% every year. The new law won’t stop the development yet will back it off finished the following ten years to 5.5%. This sounds little yet it is anticipated to spare Medicare more than 400 billion dollars throughout the following 10 years. In what manner will this be expert?


Beginning this year the law will decrease installment increments to suppliers, for example, clinics, nursing homes, home health offices. These suppliers hope to see expanded benefit because of recently guaranteed patients. Numerous have consented to acknowledge these installments. The law will likewise affect Medicare financing of Advantage Plans. While the Advantage Plans at first were required to spare Medicare cash, things being what they are these plans really cost Medicare over $1,100 more per individual than original Medicare. Higher premiums paid by Medicare recipients pay for this over installment. The new law will bring down these installments after some time to align the costs more with original Medicare.


If you are one of the 25% of all seniors selected in these plans, the diminishes in financing may affect you in a few ways. You may find that your plan increments premiums, takes out additional benefits like eye glasses. You may even find that your plan quits offering Medicare coverage totally. You can rest guaranteed be that as it may. The MA plans can not wipe out any of the benefits that Medicare gives, just the additional benefits can be affected and if you lose your plan you will have the privilege to change to another plan or back to original Medicare. The new law won’t make you lose your basic Medicare benefits.

Medicare Supplement plans and Medicare Advantage Plans

While Original Medicare which includes Part A and Part B, covers numerous health services costs, it still is not able to cover everything. Indeed, even with the covered services of health care, individuals are still in charge of various copayments and deductibles. Also, Medicare Part A and Part B don’t cover certain benefits, for example, routine vision and dental, physician recommended drugs, or foreign health care services. In the event that the sum total of what you have is Original Medicare, you’ll have to pay for these expenses out-of-pocket.

Thus, numerous individuals with Medicare select in Medicare plans to cover these areas in coverage. There are two kinds of Medicare plans i.e.  Medicare Advantage and Medicare Supplement (or Medigap) plans. Medicare Advantage plans are an elective method to get Original Medicare, while Medigap plans work with your Original Medicare coverage. These plans have a few differences with regards to costs, advantages, and how they work. It’s imperative to comprehend these distinctions as you review your Medicare coverage alternatives.

Difference between the Medicare Supplement plan & Medicare Advantage Plan:

United Healthcare medicare supplement work with Original Medicare, Part A, and B, and may help you to pay for specific costs that Original Medicare doesn’t cover. These plans don’t give stand-alone coverage and you have to remain selected in Part A and Part B for your medical and hospital coverage. In the event that you require prescription drug coverage then you’d get it through a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan, not a Medicare Supplement plan.

When you purchase a Medicare Supplement plan, you are still selected in Original Medicare, Part A and B. Medicare pays for your hospital services charges essentially, while the Medigap plan just takes care of certain expense sharing costs required by Medicare, for example, copayments or deductibles. Likewise, Medigap plans may help you with different costs that Original Medicare doesn’t cover, for example, Medicare Part B excess charges or emergency Medicare coverage when you are out of the country. Remember that Medicare Supplement plans must be utilized to pay for Original Medicare costs; they can’t be utilized with Medicare Advantage plans.

On the other side, Medicare Advantage plan are another option to Original Medicare. On the off chance that you enlist in a Medicare Advantage plan, you’re still in the Original Medicare. However, you’ll get your Medicare benefits through your Medicare Advantage plan, rather than through the governmentally managed program.


To select in a Medicare Advantage plan, you must:

  • Have Original Medicare, Part A & B.
  • Live in the service area territory of the Medicare Advantage plan you’re thinking about.
  • Not have the end-stage renal disease (with a few exemptions),

Medicare Advantage plans must give an indistinguishable level of scope from Original Medicare, except for hospice care (which is as yet secured by Part A). A few plans may likewise cover extra advantages that Original Medicare doesn’t cover, for example, routine vision and dental care services, health programs along with the prescribed drugs.