Senior Health Insurance Article

Medicare Supplement Comparison in 4 Easy Steps

If you want to run a Medicare supplement comparison right now, visit our quote engine, enter your zip code (all other info is optional) and click on the “Next Step” button.  You’ll get a list of Medicare supplemental plans available in your area, along with their prices.

If you want to educate yourself a bit first, read on.

People often feel overwhelmed at the prospect of selecting a health insurance plan to supplement their Medicare for one reason:  it’s confusing territory.  But with a little background information and some guidance, you’ll be able to run a Medicare supplement comparison and make an informed decision about which is the right Medicare supplemental plan for you.

Step 1:  Know the Definition of Medigap Insurance.

Medicare supplemental insurance is commonly referred to as Medigap because it was designed to fill in the gaps left behind by Medicare.  Medigap is different from Medicare Advantage Plans, which are a way to receive Medicare plus additional benefits.  Medigap plans were designed to help you pay for things that Medicare does not, such as Medicare coinsurance and copayments or skilled nursing care.  Medigap plans are sold by private insurance companies, but standardized by the Federal government and they are named for the letters of the alphabet.  The PDF table below shows a summary of the plans for sale starting on June 1st, 2010.

Medigap-June-2010.pdf

Step 2:  Set Your Priorities.

As you saw in the PDF table above, Medigap plans cover a specific set of benefits.  The way to choose the right for you is to know which benefits you value and which you can do without.  Print the table above and circle those benefits you value most.  Then check to see which lettered Medigap plans offer the benefits you want.  Cross off the plans that don’t offer the things you care about most.

Step 3:  Understand Medigap Pricing.

Medigap plans are generally priced in one of three ways as outlined below.

  • Attained Age:  these plans are priced based on the subscriber’s age at any give time.  That means the premiums go up over time as you age and they can quickly get expensive.
  • Issue Age: these plans are priced based on the subscriber’s age at the time they first enroll in the policy.  Premiums do not go up as you age, but only moderately in the event of health care inflation.
  • Community Rated:  these plans are priced based on where the subscriber lives and like the issue age Medigap plans, they do not increase over time because the subscriber has aged.



If possible, we recommend that you select an issue-age or community rated plan.  Though these may appear to be more expensive in the short run, they tend to be much less expensive in the long run because the premiums are locked in and do not continue to steadily rise as you age. Click here if you’re ready to sign up Medigap Overview Page.

Step 4:  Get a Quote.

Now that you’re armed with some information (have that marked-up PDF table at your side!), you’re ready to get a quote.  Just visit our quote engine, enter your zip code (all other info is optional) and click on the “Next Step” button.  You’ll get a list of Medicare supplemental plans available in your area, along with their prices.  Any plan that is not available for sale in your area is automatically excluded from your results.

If at any time you would prefer to speak to a licensed Medicoverage agent, just visit our contact page and give us a call.  We’re here to help.



Comments and Questions

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  • Comment from jenilyne on March 30, 2014

    my mom has medicare and she had blue cross it got canceled, was wondering whats another supplamental insurance that is affordable for her

    MEDICOVERAGE AGENT RESPONSE
    Jenilyne,
    Thanks for your question. As Medicare Supplement options vary by state and provider, as well as what your mother’s health needs are, we suggest getting an instant Medigap quote or calling our agents at 800-930-7956.
    Eric from medicoverage.com



  • Comment from george schwartz on April 23, 2013

    I am inquiring about supplemental insurance for medicare especially in the lines of prescription drugs.

    I have been with blue cross for a number of years and am very pleased with the coverage and was wondering if it would change when i go onto medicare.

    I am on a daily dose of atripla and again very pleased with the insurance coverage of the drug and wondering if the cost will go up after medicare.

    MEDICOVERAGE AGENT RESPONSE:
    George,

    Thank you for contacting us. If you purchase a Blue Cross Medigap plan you will be able to stay with Blue Cross and should get the same service (although your benefits will be different).

    Additionally you will have to purchase a Medicare Part D Prescription plan. You can learn more about how that work on our sister site:  https://www.senior65.com/prescriptions



  • Comment from Suzanne romero on September 19, 2012

    I want issue age comparison



  • Comment from Jon Taylor on March 21, 2012

    Interested in opinions on medicare advantage vs medigap



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