Medicare Supplements (Medigap)
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More Information on Medicare Supplements
What is it?
A Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap) policy, sold by private companies, can help pay some of the health care costs that Original Medicare doesn't cover, like copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles. Some Medigap policies also offer coverage for services that Original Medicare doesn't cover, like medical care when you travel outside the U.S.
Why do I need it?
A Medicare Supplement policy helps pay health costs that aren't covered by your Original Medicare.
What's the difference between Original Medicare and a Medicare Supplement?
Understanding Medicare can be confusing.
Medicare Part A is a hospital insurance with no monthly premium with a few exceptions. It pays for inpatient care in hospitals and helps cover home health, hospice and skilled nursing facility care, but not long-term care. A deductible and copay may apply with Part A.
Medicare Part B has a monthly premium which is usually withheld from your monthly Social Security check. A deductible and coinsurance may apply. Part B helps pay for medical care not covered by Part A, such as doctor visits, outpatient hospital services and medical equipment. It also helps cover some preventive services to maintain health.
When and how can I switch my Medicare Supplement?
Each year, you have the right to renew your current plan. While your rates may increase, your insurance company cannot refuse to renew your coverage or impose any waiting periods based on pre-existing conditions, as long as you stay in the same plan as before.
You have the right to switch insurance companies, to an identical plan, under Missouri law, each year during the 30 days before or after your policy anniversary date (the date on which your policy first started).
For example, if your policy renews on June 30, you can switch policies between June 1 and July 30. You can call the insurance company to get your anniversary date. If you change to the same lettered plan--for example, from Plan F at Insurance Company XYZ to Plan F at Insurance Company ABC, the new insurance company cannot deny you coverage and cannot impose a waiting period based on pre-existing conditions.
To demonstrate that you qualify to change policies, you are required to show only minimal proof. Simply produce a renewal notice (from your old insurance company), invoice, the old policy or other confirmation of policy ownership to the agent or new company.
Medicare can be confusing, but at Sumner Insurance Services we enjoy helping people understand their options and answering your questions. We work with many companies and shop the rates daily to help you get the most for your hard earned money. Contact us at 660-827-4598 for a no cost, no obligation consultation at your home or our office. We are here to help you navigate your options with your healthcare retirement plans.