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Medicare Supplement Plan Comparison

Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap) plans help Medicare beneficiaries afford the out-of-pocket costs that are left behind after Medicare pays their approved portion for health care services. Each plan offers a different assortment of benefits, with some offering comprehensive options and some basic options. This is how the different Medicare Supplement Plans compare.

Comprehensive Medigap Plans

If you want to pay as little as possible out-of-pocket for your health care expenses, a comprehensive coverage option may be right for you. The most comprehensive plans available are Plan G, Plan C, and Plan F. Although, Plan F will not be available for individuals who qualified for Medicare after the start of 2020.

All of these plans cover the following benefits:

  • Medicare Part A coinsurance and hospital costs for up to 365 days after your Medicare benefits run out.
  • Medicare Part A deductible
  • Medicare Part B coinsurance and copayments
  • Medicare Part B excess charges
  • Blood to be used in a medical procedure, up to 3 pints.
  • Part A hospice care coinsurance and copayments
  • Foreign travel health emergency costs up to 80%

The only difference between Plan G and Plan F is that Plan G does not cover the Medicare Part B deductible. The difference between Plan C and Plan F is that Plan C does not cover Part B excess charges. If you want your Part B deductible covered, go with Plan C, but if you want your Part B excess charges covered, Plan G will be the option for you. All of these plans are similar in price, but Plan G will likely be the least expensive.

Basic Medigap Plans

Some people prefer basic Medigap plans because less benefits usually require lower monthly premiums. The most basic Medigap plan is Plan A. It offers the bare minimum of benefits, which include:

  • Part A coinsurance related to inpatient hospital care received for up to 365 days after your Medicare benefits run out.
  • Part B copayments and coinsurance.
  • 3 Pints of blood to be used in any medical procedure.
  • Part A hospice care coinsurance or copayments.

All Medigap plans include at least this level of coverage, but some plans have additional benefits as well. For example, Plan D will cover Part A hospice care coinsurance and copayments, skilled Nursing Facility Care, and foreign travel emergencies. Plan B on the other hand will cover your entire Part A deductible.

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Medigap Cost-sharing Plans

If you desire lower premium payments, a cost-sharing plan may be right for you. These plans pay a portion of several cost categories, leaving members to share in the cost. The amount you will need to pay varies from plan to plan. With Plan K, you are required to pay 50% of covered benefits, while Plan L covers 75%. These are the benefits covered by Plans K and L:

  • 100% coverage of Medicare Part A coinsurance and hospital costs for up to 365 days after your Medicare benefits run out.
  • 50%/75% Medicare Part A hospice care coinsurance and copayments
  • 50%/75% coverage of Medicare Part A deductible
  • 50%/75% coverage of Medicare Part B coinsurance and copayments
  • Medicare Part B excess charges
  • 50%/75% coverage of skilled nursing facility care coinsurance
  • 50%/75% coverage for blood to be used in a medical procedure, up to 3 pints.

Plan M covers most of these costs fully, but will only pay 50% of your Part A deductible. Unlike plans K, L, and M, Plan N is not specifically a cost sharing plan, but it does have some cost-sharing features. Rather than a percentage, Plan N members are required to pay up to $20 for in-person office visits and up to $50 for emergency room visits. The exact amount varies across insurers.