What are they?
Medicare Supplement Plans, which are also known are MedSupp or Medigap, are insurance plans that provide coverage for the out-of-pocket expenses that Original Medicare doesn’t cover. There are currently 10 plans available (A, B, C, D, F, G, K, L, M, and N) though that number may vary depending on which state you live in. As of 2010, E, H, I, and J plans stopped being available, although some members may still have them. If you reside in Massachusetts, Minnesota, and Wisconsin, these states have different Medigap plans than the rest of the country. Each Medigap plan is labeled with a letter that aligns with a tier of certain benefits. The benefit plans are all the same regardless of where you live or which insurance company sells them.
Insurance companies are not required to sell all Medigap plan types. However, it is required by law that insurance companies that choose to sell Medigap must offer Medigap Plan A, as well as a few other regulations.
What types of plans are available?
- Plan A – Plan A is the most basic plan out of the ten, covering the least benefits. Plan A covers 100% of the following items:
- First three pints of blood using during a medical procedure
- Hospice care copayment or coinsurance expense for Part A
- Coinsurance payment coverage up to a year after Medicare benefits are completely used for inpatient hospital care under Part A
- Copayment or coinsurance expenses for Medicare Part B
- Plan B – This plan is not to be confused with Medicare Part B, although they share similar names. Plan B shares the same benefits as Plan A.
- Plan C – This plan has been phased out, so if you became eligible for Medicare on or after January 1, 2020, you would not have been able to purchase Plan C. Plan C provides coverage for the following:
- Same benefits as Plan A & B
- Coinsurance for skilled nursing facility care
- Deductibles for Part A & B
- Coverage for foreign travel emergency
- Plan D – Plan D covers about the same benefits as Plan C, except it doesn’t cover Medicare Part B deductible.
- Plan F – Considered to be the most comprehensive out of all 10 supplemental plans, as it has a wide range of coverage. The main difference between Plan F and Plans A-D is that it also provides coverage for excess Medicare Part B excess charges.
- Plan G – Like Plan F, Plan G offers the most comprehensive coverage out of the other supplemental plans. What separates the two is the fact that Plan G doesn’t provide coverage to Medicare Part B deductible.
- Plan K – Plan K is one of the cheaper Medigap supplemental plans, with a lower premium. With Plan K, it only covers 50% of Original Medicare costs and includes an annual out-of-pocket limit.
- Plan L – Like Plan K, Plan L offers an annual out-of-pocket limit for plan members. Unlike other plans, Plan L has higher levels of cost-sharing. Plan L provides 75% coverage to most items mentioned for Plans C & D, except for Medicare Part A coinsurance and hospital costs up to 365 days, which is fully covered (100%).
- Plan M – Plan M is quite similar to other plans, except that it doesn’t cover Medicare Part B deductible or excess charges.
- Plan N – What sets apart Plan N from other supplemental plans is how it approaches Medicare Part B coinsurance or copayment coverage. It’ll provide coverage except for copayment up to $20 for doctor’s office visits and up to $50 for trips to the emergency room that don’t lead to inpatient admittance. (Source)
Remember to do your research (check out this chart for comparison of each plan) before you add anything to your Original Medicare plan.