The American healthcare landscape has some of the best and comprehensive government-funded healthcare insurance plans globally. From Medicaid to Medicare, eligible Americans of various age groups enjoy medical coverage for various preexisting and existing medical conditions.
However, health insurance is broad; some of the healthcare needs of those eligible may not be fully covered. Consequently, out of the pocket payments have become major stumbling blocks for many especially those registered for Medicare. Out of the pocket payment has significantly raised the cost of health insurance. To offset this major drawback, healthcare insurance plans funded by the government have a supplementary option. One such supplemental insurance program is Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap).
What is Medigap?
Medicare Supplement Insurance is a renewable, supplement medical insurance policy sold by private insurance companies and only covers a single individual. It supplements the provisions provided under Part A and Part B of the Original Medicare provisions. Therefore, eligibility for the plans in most states is based on reaching 65 years. However, it is mandatory for those opting for supplemental plans to enroll for Part A and Part B provisions of the Medicare insurance policy.
The policy development was informed by the fact that the Original Medicare does not cover other insurance needs such as deductibles, coinsurance, and copayments, which may be crucial for other Medicare enrollees but are not covered by Medicare. These crucial services, if not covered by insurance plans. Lead to a high cost of health insurance as individuals have to pay for them out of their own pockets. The private health insurance companies that offer these Original Medicare supplemental plans have to be approved by Medicare.
Medical Insurance Plan
The medical insurance plan has ten plans, which individuals can enroll for depending on the medical needs and/or ability to pay the premiums charged by the providers. These plans have different benefits including out-of-pocket limit, overseas travel exchange, deductibles, coinsurance, and copayment. The percentages of these benefits also differ depending on the plan. Additionally, private insurance companies sometimes do not offer all the ten plans.
However, the plans they offer are usually standardized across most states. The standardization usually follows the guidelines provided in the state and federal laws. Individuals are free to take up any plan except for E, H, I, and J, which were phased out in 2010 and are only available for those who had previously registered. It is also important to note that overseas travel exchange coverage does not exceed $50,000 throughout the policy lifetime. Those eligible for the plan but are enrolled under the Medicare Advantage Plan should consider leaving it before their supplement their Medicare coverage becomes active.
How Can We Benefit Using Medigap
Whether individuals for Medicare Supplement Insurance during the automatic 6-month Medical insurance open enrollment period when they turn 65 years or open enrolment period. They enjoy a raft of benefits that improve their access to healthcare services. Emergency medical care during foreign travels: Those who travel overseas are usually susceptible to medical emergencies. Some of which are not covered under the provisions of the Original Medicare. Individuals who buy any of the plans provided by the Medicare supplemental plan enjoy medical emergency cover for the first sixty days of their stay abroad. The percentage of cost covered by the supplemental insurance plan varies with the various plans bought by the users. Those who meet the $250 annual threshold enjoy up to 80 percent cost coverage for their total overseas medical emergency cost.
Coinsurance and Copayment Explained
Those who subscribe for the supplemental plan enjoy coinsurance and copayment for Medicare Part A and B coverage including Part A hospice care. Depending on the plan, they can also enjoy copayment and coinsurance for access to skilled nursing facility care. Moreover, some plans cover Medicare Part A and B deductible coverage and Medicare Part B excess charges. These coverage plans, therefore, reduce the cost of health insurance by reducing out-of-pocket payments by the individuals.
Variable percentage coverage provided by the supplemental plan also includes payment for the first 3 pints of blood given to individuals covered by the plan. Because some of these benefits are not enjoyed uniformly across the various plans. It is important to compare the plans and select one that suits your individual needs. Moreover, they benefit availability vary across states. Some of the private providers usually have restrictions on the facilities to access their services. Users are also advised to renewable their premiums and meet the various thresholds to continue enjoying the services.