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Exploring the Not-So-Great Sides of Medigap Supplement Plans

Exploring the Not-So-Great Sides of Medigap Supplement Plans

Let’s delve into some drawbacks to consider when it comes to Medigap Supplement Plans. No need to stress, though — we’ll navigate through them together.

Dealing with Multiple Plans and Premiums

Okay, so it might seem a bit overwhelming initially. It’s a shift from the simplicity of having a plan that covers it all. You find yourself needing three to four cards, each doing something different, and handling those various premiums can be a tad confusing. When you combine Part B, Medigap Supplement, and a prescription drug plan, your monthly premiums may be around $400 (at the time of writing this). So, with your Part B deductible, a fair estimate to budget is around $5,000 a year, not including prescription drug costs.

Missing Part D Prescription Coverage

While a Medigap Supplement has its merits, it doesn’t include prescription drug coverage (Part D). Expect to budget around $50 a month for a separate Part D plan ─ this varies. And, keep in mind that this won’t cover all your medication costs, as copays for drugs are still a consideration.

Need dental, vision, or hearing coverage? Well, that’s another separate plan to think about.

Premiums on the Rise with Age

Sure, the initial cost of around $150 per month for a Medigap Supplement plan may sound reasonable, but here’s the catch — it increases as you age. Every Medigap Supplement plan becomes pricier over time. Even small annual rate increases can add up, so it’s crucial to choose a plan that keeps those increases in check.

Limited Enrollment Window for Guaranteed Acceptance

When you first start your Medicare Part B, you’re in what is called open enrollment for Medigap Supplements. Translation – you can choose any Medigap Supplement without answering any health questions – no underwriting. They have to accept you. However, this window is a one-time offer when you first get your Medicare Part B.

Consider this scenario ─ you start with a Medigap Supplement company, and it has a significant rate increase, and you want to change to a different plan some years later. Or let’s say you start with an Advantage plan and you decide you want to go with a Medigap Supplement later. If you decide to switch plans or companies, they can ask health questions and put you through underwriting. If you can’t medically qualify for that insurance company’s criteria, they don’t have to accept you. They can decline you, and you might find yourself stuck on your current plan. With few exceptions, the only time to guarantee your acceptance into a Medigap Supplement is the first time you get onto Medicare.

In reality, there might be a few bumps in the road. But hey, let’s do what we can to guide you through the process, making it as smooth and clear as possible.

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