Medicare Supplements, also known as Medigap plans, help cover out-of-pocket expenses that Original Medicare does not. This includes copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles. More than 22% of Medicare enrollees are taking advantage of these financial benefits, and enrollment has increased every year since 2010.
There are more than 10 types of plans (A, B, C, D, F, G, K, L, M, and N) and each plan offers different coverage at different prices. Most plans are guaranteed renewable life, which means as long as you pay your premium on time, you should not be canceled from your plan if a new health condition develops.
Plus, unlike Medicare Advantage plans, Supplements generally include the same coverage regardless of which carrier you enroll with (though some will add additional benefits). If you’re looking for additional financial benefits to supplement your Original Medicare, Medicare Supplement Plan C may be the way to go.
Medicare Part C vs. Plan C
Medicare Part C and Plan C are two very different things. There are four main parts of Medicare (A, B, C, and D). Original Medicare includes Part A, hospital insurance, and Part B, medical insurance. Prescription drug coverage can be purchased through Part D.
Part C is better known as Medicare Advantage (MA). MA plans are offered through private health insurance companies and provide the same coverage as Original Medicare, but with several additional benefits like hearing, vision, and dental coverage, and even fitness programs like SilverSneakers®.
However, Plan C is one of the ten Medicare Supplement plans that are available. You may hear Plan C referred to as Part C, but Plan C is the correct term.
Is Medicare Plan C Going Away?
Medicare Plan C, along with Plan F, will be discontinued in 2020. Plans C and F both include coverage for the Part B deductible, which is a benefit that the Medicare program wants to discontinue. They have found that some consumers are taking advantage of that benefit by visiting their doctor much more often than needed, costing Medicare millions of dollars. That money can be much better spent on providing coverage for people who truly need it.
If you currently have Plan C or Plan F, you will not be kicked off your coverage. If you are interested in enrolling in Plan C or Plan F, you need to do so by January 1, 2020, to be grandfathered in. Click here to get in contact with a licensed agent.
Medicare Supplement Plan C vs. Plan F
Plan F is the most popular Medicare Supplement plan but is very similar to Medicare Plan C. The only difference is that Medicare Plan C does not include Medicare excess charge coverage. If a doctor does not accept Medicare assignment rates, you will be responsible for excess charges, but it can not exceed 15% of what Medicare pays. Some states do not allow doctors to issue excess charges. If this is the case, Plan C will operate identically to Plan F.
What Does Medicare Supplement Plan C Cover?
Medicare Plan C covers all of the gaps from Original Medicare except for Part B excess charges. More specifically, Plan C includes the following:
- 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 deductible
- Foreign travel emergency
Plan C Costs
Medicare Supplement plans are generally the same regardless of which carrier you enroll with. This means if you want to enroll in Plan C, you will have the same coverage whether you enroll with Aetna, Cigna, Blue Cross Blue Shield, etc. However, costs will vary based on carrier, zip code, age, gender, and tobacco use. There’s no need to overpay for a plan if there’s a cheaper alternative on the market with identical coverage.
Plan C is an extremely comprehensive Medicare Supplement plan. If you would prefer a less comprehensive plan at a cheaper price point, you should consider Plan A or Plan B. Your best bet is to speak with a licensed agent who can show you all of the Medicare Supplement plans that are available in your area and help you enroll in the plan best suited for your needs and budget.
Plan C Reviews
Here is a list of some of the top Medigap carriers for 2019:
- Mutual of Omaha
When to Enroll in Medicare Supplement Plan C
You can enroll in a Medicare Supplement plan any time of the year, but carriers can charge you more, (or even deny you), for existing health conditions. The best time to enroll is during your initial enrollment period. This way, you can enroll in any plan that is in your area and not be denied or charged more for pre-existing conditions.
Medigap Plan Finder Tool
A licensed agent can show you available plans in your area and help you save money in the long-run. When you meet with one of our agents, there is never a cost to you and absolutely no obligation to enroll. Fill out this form or give us a call at 833-438-3676.
You can also start comparing different Medigap plans by using our Medigap plan finder tool at medicareplanfindertool.com.