Our independent agency offers Medicare Supplement insurance plans direct from several highly rated carriers. Our quotes and information are accurate and unbiased. We can help you shop for the lowest rates with the most dependable Medigap carriers in your state.
Medicare supplement insurance is only offered from private insurance companies. Prices are controlled by law, so your rates will be the same no matter your source of purchase. Using a brokerage like ours eliminates the hassle of calling each company on your own. We offer their rates direct to you at no additional cost. We also provide important information about discounts, renewal history, rate stability and customer service.
In our experience, the most commonly purchased Medicare supplement insurance policies are Plans F, G and N.
These three are popular because they cover most gaps and are offered by several competing carriers. This competition helps to keep premiums low for new enrollees and those who are shopping for better rates.
Plan F is the most comprehensive plan – it checks all of the boxes as you can see in the chart above. It’s the most popular plan, but it does not necessarily offer the best value. More on that below. Traditional Plan F covers all deductibles, copays and coinsurance not covered by Medicare. As you might guess, it has the highest monthly premiums.
So long as your healthcare expenses are approved by Medicare (and most are), Plan F will fill in all of the remaining gaps. You will have nothing more to pay. It does not matter how big the bill, Plan F picks up where Medicare leaves off. There are no calendar year or lifetime maximums – your policy will never stop paying – and it can never be cancelled so long as you pay your premiums. (This is true of all Supplements by the way.)
It’s very important to note that recent legislation was passed eliminating the sale of any Medicare supplement covering the Part B deductible. This change begins in January of 2020. Plans affected include C, F and High Deductible F. If you have these policies, you can keep them – and even shop for new ones after 2020. This legislation only affects those who are new to Medicare in 2020 and thereafter. Those beneficiaries will not be able to purchase Plans F, C and HD Plan F. We are seeing more interest in Plan G and N because of these changes.
(Plan F also comes in a high deductible version that has a $2,240 deductible for 2018. It was $2,200 in 2017 and $2,180 in both 2016 and ’15. This deductible must be met before your High Deductible Plan F supplement will pay benefits, but Medicare still pays its portion as it normally would. HD Plan F rates are the lowest available in most states and are easily distinguishable from traditional Plan F. Our clients who are in very good health tend to enjoy this variation of traditional Plan F.)
We represent a long list of insurance companies direct to out client. Shopping with our independent agency is quick and easy. Our providers include: Aetna, American Continental, Anthem Blue Cross & Blue Shield, Bankers Fidelity, Bankers Life, Central States Indemnity, Cigna, Combined Insurance, Equitable, Gerber Life, Humana, Liberty Bankers Life, Manhattan Life, Medico, Medical Mutual, Mutual of Omaha, Sentinel, Standard Life, Transamerica, United American, United Healthcare (AARP) and several others.
We also have written a two-part series that asks and answers the most common questions we encounter about Medicare supplements. This is a great place to start learning about Medigap insurance. You can access it here:
Plan G is very popular as it fills in all gaps in Original Medicare except for the small Part B deductible. For 2018, the Medicare Part B deductible is only $183 – the same as 2017. Plan G premiums can be more than $20 a month less than Plan F which makes Plan G a financially smart choice. In other words, why pay $25 a month to cover a one-time $183 deductible? It doesn’t add up.
And if the Part B deductible increases? Well in that case, Plan F carriers will raise their rates to cover it. They won’t absorb the extra cost. One way or the other you’re paying for it. Plan G gives you a little more control and almost always saves you money each year.
Like Plan G, Plan N does not cover the one-time, yearly Part B deductible. Additionally, it’s the only plan with office copays: A maximum of $20 for a doctor visit and $50 for the ER. Finally, Plan N does not cover Part B Excess Charges, but these are hardly ever encountered. In fact, many states do not allow doctors to charge part B Excess Charges to their patients.
Plan N can be another $20 or so less than G on a monthly basis. When deciding between the two, our clients who don’t often see the doctor usually choose Plan N. It offers great value when comparing benefits and monthly premiums. In many areas, it costs well under $100 a month.
And you will usually experience smaller rate increases with G & N over Plan F. There are a few different reasons for this, but primarily it’s because Plan F must accept certain individuals without medical underwriting. Thus, it tends to have a larger percentage of the population and higher claims experience than most of the other Medigap policies. These higher claims can result in above average rate increases year over year.
Note: Some insurance carriers also offer a Select version of Plans C, F, and N. In exchange for lower rates, Select plans require the use of a predetermined network of doctors and hospitals for routine (non-emergency) services. Owners of Select Plans C, F, & N are not restricted to networks for emergency services however.
Did you know:
- Nearly 11,000 people are turning age 65 daily for the next 11 years
- Plan F is the most popular Medicare supplement with close to 40% enrollment
- There are approximately 45 million people enrolled in Medicare
- By 2030, nearly 20% of the population will be 65 or older
- Medicare can charge you more for Part B and Part D based on your income
- Part B premiums can vary if you’ve deferred Social Security
By rule, there are no Medicare supplement insurance plans sold today that cover prescription drugs. Part D drug plans must be purchased on a stand-alone basis and cannot be bundled with your supplement. It’s wise to shop for Part D drug plans independently of your Medicare supplement insurance to find the most suitable coverage based on the rx’s you take.
So you will need four pieces to round out your coverage. You enroll in Medicare Parts A & B with the government – and then purchase a Medicare supplement (like Plans F, G, or N) and stand-alone Part D drug plan from private insurance companies. Two pieces come from the government and two pieces come from private insurance companies and are offered by agencies like ours. Once all four are in place, you should be all set.
We help our Medigap clients shop and compare drug coverage so as to find coverage that best suits their needs. There is no charge for this service with us. There is also a very good tool at the Medicare.gov website called Plan Finder that can help you compare plans and prices.
Hyers and Associates is an independent insurance agency specializing in Medicare supplement insurance plans, Part D drug policies and Medicare Advantage coverage. We license with all of our carriers direct – and offer all of our plans to you at no additional. We can help you better understand all of your options so that you make the best choice now for the best results in the future.
Contact us today to compare 2018 Medicare supplement insurance quotes and benefits from several companies side by side.