As of October 15th 2010, Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield of Ohio is offering Medicare supplement coverage on a guaranteed issue basis in certain circumstances – along with their standard underwritten plans.
This is good news for those over age 65 who have had trouble switching from costly Medicare supplements because of poor health or other medical underwriting issues.
Ohio Anthem Blue Cross Qualification Rules
In order to qualify, individuals must switch from an existing supplemental policy to a new Anthem plan with equal or lesser coverage. This means if you currently own Plans F or J, you can switch to a modernized Plan F (Plan J is no longer for sale as of June 2010) with no health questions asked. Likewise, you could switch from Plan G to Plan G or Plan N to Plan N, etc.
There is no waiting period for preexisting conditions that needs to be satisfied when changing. It is important to keep your old policy in force up until the day the new Anthem policy becomes effective.
Current and former Blue Cross Blue Shield members may apply for coverage on a guaranteed basis too – as well as those who were previously turned down. (Editor’s note: This guaranteed changing option without underwriting is no longer offered.)
Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans Offered
Anthem offers five attained age rated Medicare supplements in Ohio labeled A, F, high deductible F, G, and N. However, if you currently own other coverage (Plans C, D, E, H, or I for instance) there will be an equal or lesser plan that matches up to these plans.
Plans F, G and N are most popular with consumers as they provide the most benefits to the insured. Part D prescription rx plans are also offered from Anthem, but can only be changed between Nov. 15th and Dec. 31st each year.
If you have owned a Medigap plan for more than a couple of years and your premiums have risen substantially, you may find switching to like or lesser coverage will reduce your monthly insurance costs significantly.
Monthly Premiums for Anthem Supplemental
Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield offers consumers a few other ways to reduce their monthly costs. If premiums are paid electronically through a monthly bank draft (EFT), then rates will be decreased by $2 per month. Should the premium be made annually, then the one-time payment would be reduced by $48.
A household discount of 5% is also available to both enrollees when more than one member of a household enrolls in a supplemental insurance plan. This discount will become effective once both household members have been approved either at onset or in the future.
The guaranteed issue Medicare supplement offer is only good until December 1, 2011. Medical underwriting will be required for all applicants once again after December of next year.
It is rare for a Medicare supplement provider to offer a guaranteed issue plan in this way, thus it might be wise to take advantage of this offer as very few (if any) will match it.
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Hyers and Associates is a full service, independent insurance agency offering supplemental insurance plans direct to consumer. There is no mark-up or additional cost to use our services.
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