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Medicare Supplement

Private companies offer Medicare Supplement Insurance which helps beneficiaries to pay the health care costs which have not been paid by their Medicare Part A and Part B such as co-insurance, co-payments and deductibles.

Difference between Medicare Advantage Plan and Medicare Supplement Policy

A Medicare Advantage Plan administers your Medicare Part A and Part B benefits on behalf of the federal government, whereas a Medicare Supplement policy pays the coinsurance, copays, and deductibles while Medicare Part A and Part B benefits continue to be administered by the federal government.

Medicare Supplement Policies

  • Beneficiary must have Medicare Part A and Part B
  • In case you already have a Medicare Advantage Plan, you are eligible to apply for Medicare Supplement policies provided that you are able to leave your Medicare Advantage Plan before you start your Medicare Supplement policy
  • You need to pay insurance premium to the private company for Medicare Supplement policy and it will be in addition to your Part B premium you usually submit for Medicare on monthly basis
  • Only one person will be covered by a Medicare Supplement policy. For yourself and your spouse, both of you will have to apply for Medicare Supplement separately
  • You are eligible to apply for Medicare Supplement policy from any insurance company that is working in your state and has a legal license to sell these types of policies.
  • Insurance company is not allowed to cancel your Medicare Supplement policy as long as you’re paying monthly premiums timely.

Here are a few plans which are not Medicare Supplement:

  • Medicare Advantage Plans such as PPO, Private Fee-for-Service and HMO
  • Medicaid
  • Long term insurance policies
  • Medicare Prescription Drug Plans
  • Insurance plans provided by employers or unions
  • Federal Health Benefits Program (FEHBP)
  • Veterans’ Benefits
  • Indian Health Service, Tribal, and Urban Indian Health plans

Guaranteed issue rights

Guaranteed issue rights (also called "Medigap protections") are rights you have in certain situations when insurance companies must offer you certain Medigap policies. In these situations, an insurance company:Must sell you a Medigap policyMust cover all your pre-existing health conditionsCan't charge you more for a Medigap policy because of past or present health problemsIn most cases, you have a guaranteed issue right when you have other health coverage that changes in some way, like when you lose the other health care coverage. In other cases, you have a "trial right" to try a Medicare Advantage Plan (Part C) and still buy a Medigap policy if you change your mind.Note: Your rights may last for an extra 12 months under certain circumstances.
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