If you are a senior citizen who is on Medicare, then there is a good chance that you are already aware that Medicare does not provide you with all of the coverage that you need for your healthcare costs. That is where a Medicare supplement plan, or Medicare gap coverage, can be very useful. There are a number of different gap coverage plans that you can buy to help supplement your medical expenses that are not covered by Medicare. It can be very challenging, especially for the elderly, to figure out what Medicare does cover, and what it does not.
What Is Not Covered By Medicare
You might not be aware that the prescription benefits under Medicare are suspended once you get to a specific dollar amount. It is called the “Medicare donut hole.” Once you have met your prescription expenses deductible, Medicare will pay a certain percentage of your costs for prescription drugs – until you have reached the donut hole part. This time frame ranges from when Medicare no longer pays for your prescription costs until those expenses have reached a “catastrophic” level.
After the catastrophic level has been reached, Medicare pays 95 percent of your prescription drug expenses. After reaching the gap in coverage, many seniors end up not taking their medications any longer. That makes them much more susceptible to getting sick or even dying. Seniors should never have to make a choice between medicine or having to pay for other necessities. If you have the right Medicare gap coverage you won’t need to worry about not having the life-sustaining prescription medications that you need.
Another flaw in Medicare coverage is that seniors are left without important coverage for some other essential services like hearing and vision. A high percentage of senior citizens on Medicare have hearing or vision problems. This is another area where it can really make a difference for seniors to have Medicare gap coverage so afford healthcare services that they truly need.
Things to Consider When Purchasing a Medicare Supplement Plan
There are 10 standardized Medigap Plans to choose from. If you want to know more then try here and take a look at the best Medicare Supplement Plans – most of them are guaranteed renewable for life. That means that as long as you pay your premium payments on time, you will not be canceled due to age or health conditions. To find the best medical supplemental policy for your needs, it is important to carefully weigh and compare the options and benefits that are offered by each of the plans. When comparing various Medicare supplemental plans, here are some of the most important considerations:
Kind of Provider Plans Available To You: It is important to determine which kinds of provider plans are available. That is very important since it determines which healthcare professionals you will be approved to use. Find out whether you can select your healthcare providers or if you are required to use a healthcare facility or doctor that belongs to a PPO or HMO. Also, find out whether it is necessary to have a referral to see a specialist and whether or not the supplemental insurance plan pays the cost.
Prescription Drug Coverage: A high percentage of healthcare costs are made up of prescription expenses. Find out whether there is a co-pay amount with the plan, how much the co-pay is, and whether there is a deductible amount you can satisfy to get all of your prescription costs covered.
Additional Benefits: There could be other benefits that you need that regular Medicare does not cover. Those could be quite important, depending on your specific situation. Some additional coverage options that you might want to learn about include vision and hearing services coverage.
A Plan’s Overall Cost: A plan that offers more options will tend to cost more. You will need to determine which is more important to you – minimizing your healthcare costs or being able to select your own providers and services. If you carefully compare plans, you may be able to find a good middle ground where you have many of the service and provider options you want while still keeping your costs down.
Medicare gap coverage can help to ease the concerns that you have about being able to pay for your medical care that your Medicare plan does not cover. As soon as you turn 65 years old you become eligible to buy a Medigap policy and are also eligible to enrolee in the regular Parts A & B Medicare Benefits. If you are planning to retire, find out if your employer has an extension available on your present healthcare benefits that can supplement Medicare benefits. Speak to an insurance agent if you are still not sure how much supplemental Medicare insurance you might need to have. The agent should be able to help you find a plan that is affordable and provides you with the coverage options you need.