Medicare Supplement Plans, also known as Medigap, help cover out-of-pocket Medicare expenses like copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles. 22% of Medicare enrollees are utilizing the benefits of Medigap plans. In fact, enrollment has increased every year since 2010.
There are ten plans that you can choose from (A, B, C, D, F, G, K, L, M, and N) and most are guaranteed renewable life, meaning as long as you pay your premium on time, you won’t be canceled from your plan due to a new health condition. Plus, unlike Medicare Advantage plans, Medigap plans are the same no matter which carrier you enroll with. If you’re looking for coverage assistance, a Medigap plan may be the way to go – but which one? Here’s everything you need to know.
What is Medicare Plan G?
Medicare Plan G is very similar to Medicare Plan F, which is the most popular Medicare Supplement plan. Plan G offers excellent benefits to beneficiaries who would rather pay a small annual deductible to protect themselves from spending more out-of-pocket in the event of an unforeseen health expense.
Plan G covers all of the gaps from Original Medicare except for the Part B deductible. More specifically, it covers:
- Medicare Part A coinsurance and hospital costs
- Part B coinsurance and copayments
- Blood work copays up to three pints
- Hospice coinsurance and copayments
- Skilled nursing facility coinsurance
- Part A deductible
- Part B excess charges
- Foreign emergency travel
Pro tip: Sometimes you may hear Medicare Plan G referred to as Medicare Part G. Most agents will know what you mean, but Plan G is the correct term. Medicare can be confusing, but here’s an easy way to remember it! Medicare only has four parts (A, B, C, and D), while all Medicare Supplements are referred to as plans.
What is the cost of Plan G?
As we mentioned, all Medigap plans provide the same benefits regardless of which carrier you choose. This means if you want to purchase Plan G, you will have the same coverage whether you enroll with Aetna, Blue Cross Blue Shield, or Cigna, etc. However, here’s the catch… the costs will vary based on carrier, zip code, age, gender, and tobacco use. Some plans are as low as $80/month while some are as high as $170/month.
The best way to make sure you are getting the best price based on your specifics is to work with a licensed agent. Our agents at Medicare Plan Finder are contracted with all the major carriers so they can help you compare costs all in one appointment. Click here to get in contact with a licensed agent.
Is Medicare Plan G better than Plan F?
Plan F is almost identical to G, the only difference is Plan F covers the Part B deductible. However, Plan F is going away, and you must be enrolled in Plan F no later than January 1, 2020, to maintain coverage. Plan G is cheaper than Plan F with almost identical benefits, so many beneficiaries prefer Plan G.
Plan F may technically cover more, but many people consider Plan G to be a better value. Yes, you will need to pay your Part B deductible upon your first outpatient visit, but after you pay the deductible, you won’t need to pull your wallet out for the remainder of the year. Since you have to pay the Part B deductible yourself, Plan G has lower monthly premiums, and you could save more than $400 a year! The standard Part B deductible for 2019 is $135.50, so the savings from choosing G over F significantly outweighs the cost of the deductible.
The chart below illustrates the small difference between plans F and G, as well as differences between F, G, and all the other Medigap plan options.
Plan G Reviews
So now you understand that your benefits are going to be the same no matter which carrier you choose to go with. So why are some plans reviewed better than others? Price is a huge factor. There is no reason to overpay when the benefits are the same. Plus, there are so many A and B rated companies that sell Medigap. Companies with higher ratings have plans with higher ratings. Lastly, customer service is an important factor. Here is a list of some of the top Medigap carriers for 2019:
- Mutual of Omaha
How do I get Medicare Plan G?
The best time to enroll in a Medicare Supplement plan is during your initial enrollment period (three months before and after your 65th birthday). During this time, you can enroll in any plan that’s available in your area regardless of any health issues you may have. Outside of your IEP, you can enroll year around, but carriers can deny you or charge you more for existing conditions. Your best bet is to speak with a licensed agent. There is never a cost for meeting with one of our agents, and you are never obligated to enroll. Fill out this form or give us at a call at 833-438-3676.