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Medicare Supplement Plans In Indiana

Coming to grips with the out of pocket costs of Original Medicare is perhaps the most difficult part of planning your coverage. Understanding what those costs are, and how much they can be, is an important first step. Beyond this, considering the various private options to lower your expenses, like Medicare Supplement Insurance, will help you craft a helpful plan. In this article, we’ll review the costs of Parts A and B as well as the details on Medicare Supplement Plans in Indiana.

How Does Original Medicare Work?

The best way to learn about the costs you’ll face with Medicare is to start with the very basics and review what Medicare covers, and which costs you’re expected to pay. Original Medicare, which is split into two interrelated “parts,” was designed to make healthcare more affordable, but not free. In other words, from the very beginning of the program (back in 1966), it was designed so that you would have to pay part of the cost for your care. The specific costs that you’re exposed to are:

  • Part A deductible
  • Part B deductible
  • Part B co-insurance (20% of the Medicare-approved cost for Part B services; you start paying this after you satisfy the Part B deductible)
  • Part A co-insurance
  • Part B excess charges
  • Emergency services while outside of the United States

An important point about these costs is that there is no provision for a cap. You simply keep paying them all year long. There is also no lifetime cap, so if you have several difficult years of health, with lots of out of pocket costs, you won’t get any relief. Having a plan for meeting these expenses is very important since most people are on some kind of fixed income when they take Medicare. Medicare Supplement Insurance is designed to do just that.

How Does Medicare Supplement Insurance Work?

Medicare Supplement Insurance is a specialty health insurance product that pays some, or all, of the costs that you’re normally responsible for. These policies are offered by private insurance companies; they come in a variety of standardized coverages. Since Medicare Supplement Plans are said to cover or fill in the gaps of Parts A and B, they are frequently called Medigap Plans for short. Much of the rules and regulations concerning Medigap Plans are set at the federal level. Individual states had the option to adopt standardized plans and laws; 47 of them did so, including Indiana. In these so-called standardized states, Medigap Plan benefits are standardized in 11 different Plan options: Plans A, B, C, D, F, G, K, L, M, and N. Besides these there are High Deductible versions of Plans F and G. It’s important to note that for people who become eligible for Medicare after December 31, 2019, Plans C, F, and High Deductible F are no longer available. Anyone eligible before that date preserves the right to choose those plans. Each of the 11 standardized plans offers a different coverage level. In other words, they each cover a different arrangement of the gaps in Medicare. Only Plan F (available to Americans eligible before January 1, 2020) covers all of the gaps. The least comprehensive plan, Plan A, covers these costs for you:

  • 100% of your Part A co-insurance for hospital stays and hospice care
  • 100% of the cost of your first three pints of blood (Original Medicare covers anything beyond that)
  • 100% of your Part B co-insurance (the 20% that Medicare doesn’t cover)

All other costs are uncovered; you’ll have to pay them. The uncovered costs are:

  • Part A deductible
  • Part A co-insurance for skilled nursing stays
  • Part B deductible
  • Part B excess charges
  • Emergency coverage outside the U.S.

The most comprehensive Medigap Plan available to people who become eligible after December 31, 2019 is Plan G. Plan G will cover 100% of all the costs for you except for the Part B deductible ($233 for 2022). Once you meet that small amount, Plan G will cover all of your Medicare-approved costs for the rest of the year. The other standardized Plans have coverage somewhere in between Plans A and G. By having this variety of coverage options, you’re able to select the level of benefits that meets your needs. When it comes to using your Medicare Supplement Plan, you’ll simply give your providers both your Original Medicare card and your Medigap plan card. Your provider will bill both Medicare and your Plan. Medicare is the primary payor; in the case of Part B services and procedures like office visits, lab work, or diagnostic testing, they’ll pay the first 80%, assuming you’ve already met the Part B deductible. Your provider will bill your Plan the remaining 20%. Most Medigap plans will cover this completely, but in some cases you might have a small remaining balance, which you’ll be responsible for paying.

Who Is Eligible For Medicare Supplement Plans In Indiana?

Everyone who is enrolled in both Part A and B of Original Medicare is eligible for Medicare Supplement Insurance in Indiana. This includes people who qualify for Medicare before turning 65. However, the premiums that insurance companies can charge for people under 65 are not regulated. This can make it hard to find affordable Medicare Supplement Plans in Indiana for people under 65.

How Can I Choose A Medigap Plan?

Choosing a Medigap Plan is an important decision and needs to take into consideration many factors. As a general basis for making a decision consider these questions:

  • How much medical care do I typically use during one year?
  • What is my personal health history and what has the health history of my family been like?
  • Do I need coverage outside the United States?
  • What premium level can I afford right nowll, and in ten or more years’ time, taking into account premium increases?

The general idea is to get a Plan that will meet your coverage needs (close the gaps that you’re likely to need help with) while keeping the premiums affordable. The need for international coverage alone will narrow your choices since only Plans C, D, F, G, M, and N offer this benefit.

FAQ About Medicare Supplement Plans In Indiana

Do Medicare Supplement Plans cover prescription medications?

No, they don’t. You will need to enroll in a standalone Part D drug plan to get drug coverage.

Do Medicare Supplement Plans help with vision, hearing, or dental services?

No. To get help with these benefits, you will need to consider standalone coverage for those services.

When is the best time to get Medigap coverage?

The best time to enroll in Medicare Supplement Insurance is when you’re in your Open Enrollment Period. Your Medigap Open Enrollment Period lasts for 6 months and begins only when you are both age 65 or older and active in Part B. During this window, you can’t be declined or charged higher premiums due to your health history.

Can I switch Medigap Plans?

Yes, you can do that. However, if you do this after your Open Enrollment Period has closed, you’ll probably have to answer health-related questions, which means that you could be turned down or charged higher premiums because of your health status.

Can I switch from Medigap to Medicare Advantage?

Yes. You can drop your Medicare Supplement Plan and enroll in a Medicare Advantage Plan during Medicare’s Annual Election Period (AEP). AEP is October 15th to December 7th of each year.

Selection Matters Most When You Choose a Medicare Supplement Plan

Every Medicare Supplement plan with the same plan letter (F, G, etc) offers precisely the same benefits to you, but prices vary widely from one insurer to another. It’s in your best interest to have access to as many plans by as many insurers as possible when you make your Medicare Supplement plan.

That’s where Medicare Consumer comes in. When you speak with our experts you get access to plans from dozens of different insurers. They’ll guide you to the right plan for you at the best possible rate.

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MedicareConsumer.com is a non-government agency and is on a mission to help current and future Medicare recipients find the best Medicare supplement plan for their unique needs. Medicare insurance logos as seen on MedicareConsumer.com belong to the respected trademark owners in our available network of Medicare insurance carriers. Any and all rate quotes for Medicare supplement plans are free to consumers and you are not obligated to purchase any plan from any carrier.

Participating sales agencies do not offer every plan available in your area. Any information we provide is limited to those plans we do offer in your area. Please contact Medicare.gov or 1–800–MEDICARE to get information on all of your options.

Participating sales agencies represent Medicare Advantage [HMO, PPO, PFFS, and PDP]organizations that are contracted with Medicare. Enrollment depends on the plan’s contract renewal.

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