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Arizona Medicare Supplemental Insurance

Arizona Medicare supplemental insurance has helped many seniors cover their medical costs by filling gaps in their original plans. Supplemental policies can help pay for premiums, deductibles, coinsurance and services not covered by basic Medicare. With so many activities to enjoy in AZ, from golf to mountain recreation, seniors have many opportunities to live full and active lives. Worrying about unexpected medical emergencies or the expense of hospital and doctor visits doesn't have to be part of retirement in Arizona.

Arizona Medicare Basics

Medicare is a federal program that was originally designed to give seniors age 65 and older a form of basic medical insurance after retirement. Now, as more seniors delay retirement, they face the decision to either keep their employer's coverage or enroll in the federal plan. Seniors do have the option to delay enrolling in Medicare, but penalties may apply. Arizona residents under age 65 with certain disabilities can also apply for the program.

Original Medicare consists of hospital insurance, known as Part A, and outpatient insurance, known as Part B. Part A covers overnight hospital stays longer than 72 hours, skilled nursing facility, hospice care and home health care. Part B covers outpatient hospital care, including overnight stays less than 72 hours, doctor visits, some preventative services like flu shots and home health services. The government has also added a prescription drug plan called Part D.

Most people don't pay a monthly premium for Part A, although the government does require a monthly premium from people in some tax brackets. All seniors must pay a monthly premium for Part B. Both parts of original Medicare require participants to pay deductibles and coinsurance for most services. Seniors must pay the difference out-of-pocket unless they have supplemental coverage. Arizona Medicare supplemental insurance, also called Medigap, can take care of these deductibles, putting more money back in the pockets of Arizona residents.

Understanding Supplemental Plans

The federal government has approved 10 standardized Arizona Medicare supplemental insurance policies, labeled Plan A through N. Plans E, H, I and J are no longer available, but those who bought these supplemental plans while they were still offered may keep them. Plan A is the most basic option, offering Part A and B coinsurance, preventative care coinsurance and up to three pints of blood. Plan F offers the most expansive coverage, including all of Part A's benefits along with skilled nursing coinsurance, Part A and B deductibles, Part B excess charges and emergency care while overseas. Your lifestyle, retirement benefits and genetic predisposition to certain medical conditions will help determine the right level of coverage for you.

Since federal law requires that each lettered plan within Arizona Medicare supplemental insurance policies be uniform, the only difference between Plan A at one company and Plan A another should be price. Not all companies offer all plans, however, and some companies only cover certain counties within a state. The only uniform rule on plans offered is that all companies selling Arizona Medicare supplemental insurance must offer Plan A. The Arizona Department of Insurance publishes a free guide to supplemental plans, including premium comparisons. Using all available resources can help you find the best plan for you, whether you're looking for plans with the lowest premiums or seek the fullest coverage possible.

Getting Medigap in Arizona

Forty-two companies offer Arizona Medicare supplemental insurance, although few companies offers all 10 standardized plans, and a limited number of companies offer plans to people under 65 with disabilities. Knowing which plan you need before shopping for companies can help you select the best one for you from all ten options. Choosing your plan before finding a company will prevent you from unwittingly limiting yourself to what one firm might offer.

The best time to enroll in an Arizona Medicare supplemental insurance plan is during the six-month period after you sign up for Parts A and B. Called "open enrollment," this period allows seniors to purchase the plan of their choice without getting a physical. Companies offering supplemental plans also cannot deny you a plan or charge you more because of your lifestyle or a preexisting condition, although they may be able to delay coverage for certain preexisting conditions for up to six months. Ask your company before purchasing Medigap about whether delays may apply to you.

Arizona Medicare supplemental insurance has helped many seniors cover health insurance costs and gain peace of mind that they'll be prepared for medical emergencies, coinsurance, premiums and deductibles. From the sunny deserts of Tuscan, AZ to the mountains of Flagstaff, AZ, many seniors depend on Medigap to cover many kinds of medical costs. Without the stress of uncertainty over medical insurance, seniors are fee to live life to the fullest with Arizona Medicare supplemental insurance.

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