Medicare Supplement plans work together with Original Medicare to assist with out-of-pocket medical expenses not otherwise covered by original Medicare (Parts A & B). These plans cover some of the same items as Original Medicare, but often at more affordable rates. These include:
Part A: Skilled nursing facility benefits, coverage for services in an inpatient rehab unit, physician visits, emergency and hospital stays, and durable medical supplies are covered under Part A. Some parts of the United States administer their own supplemental health insurance plans. Others rely on a variety of private health insurance companies that participate in Medicare. Some medigap policies include extended benefits that are not available in all policies, while others limit the number of benefits that a policy will cover.
Part B: Some countries offer both Part A and Part B, but in the United States, only Part A is federally funded. Part B is sponsored by the states and is not federally funded. It covers most of the items that Part A does, plus: vision care, certain medications (drugs), and disability income. For many people, the guaranteed issue Medicare Supplement Plans cover enough of the covered items that they do not need additional coverage.
Part D: Some people choose to enroll in Medicare Parts D and/or Medicare Advantage Plans in order to supplement their existing Medicare coverage. The basic policy of Medicare consists of 12 major Parts, each covering different aspects of the Medicare system. If you purchase additional benefits from other companies that are part of a group plan, such as part A or B, your premiums will be based on the premiums of the plan in effect at the time of enrollment. For people who purchase Medicare Supplement insurance plan f, the additional benefits are paid to the primary coverage policy.
Part C: This is another popular Medicare Supplement plan, which provides coverage for hospitalization, nursing home care, prescription drugs, medical supplies, and some disability income. Some plans also cover additional benefits, such as vision care and drug coverage. Part C does not pay any benefit limits. People who choose this option to help cover their Medicare part can save money on their premiums by paying a high deductible.
Medicare Supplement Plan premiums are usually the largest cost element for retirees who purchase supplemental insurance. They can reduce the cost of their monthly premium by choosing the right Medicare Parts. By shopping around, retirees can find affordable monthly premiums for their specific Medicare Parts. In most cases, older retirees with a higher than average annual income should seek out and purchase a Medicare Supplement plan.