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Medicare Supplement Health Insurance

Medicare supplement health insurance is a form of private coverage that you can add to original Medicare to make your overall health expenses more affordable. If you have researched Medicare supplemental prices or already rely on this insurance, you have probably noticed that Medicare by itself cannot cover the full cost of many services it offers, including hospital stays, general doctors' visits and lab work. Medicare supplement health insurance is an affordable and reliable way to make up the difference in what you would otherwise pay out of your own pocket, saving you money while reducing your stress levels during retirement.

How Supplement Insurance Works

Medicare supplement health insurance works in conjunction with your original insurance plan to cover expenses like coinsurance and deductibles. Your original plan only covers 80 percent of a federally approved amount, so without Medicare supplement health insurance you would pay the remaining coinsurance of 20 percent yourself. If you are like many seniors, these kinds of medical payments could make a serious dent in the savings you rely on for living expenses in retirement. Medicare supplement health insurance, also popularly called Medigap for "filling in the gaps" in your coverage, may make some seniors wary because of the added monthly expense to your original post-employment budget, but the benefits can far outweigh the cost should you face an unexpected medical emergency. Since accidents can happen to everyone, most seniors enroll in a Medigap plan for the simple peace of mind.

Depending on your current health status, your family history and your everyday activities, you can choose one of 10 standardized Medigap plans to supplement your original coverage. Every supplement policy covers coinsurance for hospital costs, hospice copays, general care coinsurance, and the first three pints of blood you have drawn. These basic benefits are represented by Medigap Plan A, the only plan that all Medicare supplement health insurance companies are required to carry. The other nine Medigap plans, ranging from Plan B to Plan N, offer a range of additional benefits, including deductible coverage, skilled nursing care, emergency coverage for international travel, and up to 100 percent of excess charges. Excess charges result when medical providers charge more than the Medicare approved amount. This amount can be legally up to 15 percent for certain services.

Since everyone is unique, the right Medicare supplement health insurance plan for you won't necessarily be the right policy for your sister, your neighbor or your best friend. If you have no preexisting medical conditions, a healthy family history and no plans to travel extensively abroad, Plan A or a high-deductible version of the comprehensive Plan F might be a good fit for you. Your pack-a-day best friend with a penchant for foreign adventures, however, might want a more comprehensive supplement policy like the regular version of Plan F. A little research online can give you a better idea of which Medigap policy is best for you.

Finding a Trusted Insurance Company

The best way to find a trusted supplement health insurance company is to compare rates online, seek reviews and references, and speak to agents individually. Since Medigap plans are standardized, the only difference between a plan at one company versus another is the price. The way a company treats you can also play a big role in your decision. You might choose a smaller local company with friendly, communicative agents who are willing to take the time to discuss your health with you over a larger, more corporate company that might offer lower rates. When it comes to your health, finding a trusted company to help you reliably cover your medical bills can give you great peace of mind. This sense of security is often worth the time spent researching companies to supplement your Medicare plan.

To avoid headaches down the road, it's a good idea to see that all companies you research are listed on your State Insurance Department's Web site as licensed to sell Medigap coverage in your state. You should also know that it is illegal for a company to try to sell you an extra Medigap policy if you already have one, or if you have a Medicare Advantage plan, such as an HMO or a PPO. Researching companies online will help you determine the most reputable firms in your area.

Medicare supplement health insurance has helped many seniors pay for health care expenses without worrying about coming up with large copays or deductibles. No matter how you plan to spend your retirement, the focus of your golden years should be on ticking items off your bucket list and spending time with your family, not worrying about medical expenses. Fortunately, finding the right Medicare supplement health insurance policy for you is easy and painless thanks to online resources.


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Beatrice D
Modesto CA

Medicare Supplemental Insurance Testimonial

This site made it easy to get the Medicare supplemental policy that was right for me. I saved a lot of my money and time. Medicare Supplemental Insurance Testimonial