Medicare Advantage Plans That Include Prescription Drugs
Medicare Supplemental Insurance Plans, or Medigap policies, help pay some of the out-of-pocket costs Original Medicare (Parts A & B) doesn’t cover. These include copayments, coinsurance and deductibles. Medicare Supplement plans are standardized nationally and sold by private insurance companies. Premiums can vary from company to company and even change annually.
It’s important to consider the benefits you want, as well as the cost. You can examine Medicare Supplement Plan A through Plan N to determine which one is the best fit for your needs. It’s also important to look at the insurer’s financial strength and history of rate increases, as these factors can affect how much you’ll pay for your Medicare Supplement coverage over time.
In addition to Medicare Supplement plans, you may be able to enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan (Part C). A Medicare Advantage Plan is a type Part D plan which combines Medicare hospital insurance and medical coverage. Most Medicare Advantage plans cover prescription drugs.
Most Medicare beneficiaries live in counties where at least one Medicare Advantage plan available for general enrollment offers extra benefits, such as fitness, dental, vision and hearing. In 2022, most Medicare Advantage plans that are available for general enrollment will offer a combination of these supplemental services:
Many Medicare recipients choose to enroll in Medicare Advantage plans that include prescription drug coverage. In most cases, these Medicare Advantage plans are offered by private insurance companies who have a contract with Medicare.
There are 39 Medicare Advantage plans generally available for enrollment to the average beneficiary in 2022, more than double the number available in 2017 and the largest number of options in a decade (Figure 1). This excludes employer- or union-sponsored group plans, special needs plans (SNPs) and PACE plans.
For 2022, the majority of Medicare Advantage plans with prescription drug coverage include a Part D monthly benefit and the same annual deductible as Original Medicare (Part D). There are a few exceptions to this rule, including a high deductible plan or if you have an attained-age policy.
Most Medicare Supplement and Medicare Advantage Plans are guaranteed renewable. That means that your insurance company can’t cancel the plan unless there was a deliberate false statement on your application, or if you didn’t pay premiums. You’ll receive a notice of any changes to your policy each year.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services offers a searchable database of all Medicare Advantage plans and Medicare Supplements in your area. The site also explains the rights and protections you have under each type plan.
It is best to enroll in Medicare Advantage or Medicare supplement plans during your Initial enrollment period, which lasts for six months following the month that you turn 65. If you do not enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan or Medicare Supplement plan during this time, you will have to wait until next open enrollment period.
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