The Difference Between Medicare Supplement Plans and Medicare Advantage Plans


As a senior citizen, finding the right medical insurance plan is absolutely essential. You need to have the right coverage for your present and future medical needs. Medicine and health care costs continue to increase every year, and you need to make sure you have the right plan that keeps you covered without having to pay out more than you can afford.

A common concern that most seniors have is Medigap Vs Medicare Advantage in 2018-2019 – Which Is Better?. With open enrollment deadlines coming up, it’s important to know which plan is right for you. There’s a lot of information out there, and it all can be a bit overwhelming and confusing.

One thing to remember is that by choosing a Medigap or Medicare Advantage plan, you are giving up original Medicare as your primary health care insurance. Depending on the insurance plan you select, there is still some Medicare coverage, but that coverage varies depending on the plan. Every plan has its own pros and cons and varying coverage. There are lots of providers in most areas, although coverage and pricing generally varies from company to company.

Medigap insurance plans (Also known as Medicare supplement plans)

Work in conjunction with original Medicare plans A and B. If you need medical coverage or hospital care, you need to stay enrolled in Medicare plans A and B. If you need prescription drug coverage, you need to stay with a Medicare supplement insurance plan.

Medicare supplement

Provide cost-sharing alternatives for certain copayments and deductibles. They are helpful in paying for additional charges or emergency procedures that original Medicare coverage may not cover. Medicare supplement plans can offer additional coverage of dental exams, eye exams, and prescription medications.

Medicare Advantage plans

Require enrollment in original Medicare parts A and B. A key difference is that under Medicare advantage, customers receive benefits through that plan instead of through original Medicare. These plans require that you live in the designated service area of the advantage plan provider.

One disadvantage of some Medicare Advantage plans is that they only cover treatments and services from providers that are in their network. Sometimes depending on where you live, the network may be limited, or not provide all of the medical services that you may need. Some Medicare advantage providers allow you to see out of network doctors and physicians, but the trade-off is that they may also charge higher premiums or larger co-pay amounts.

Some of the questions you need to consider before enrolling in either a Medicare Supplement or Medicare advantage are:

  1. What’s my deductible?
  2. What’s my network?
  3. What are my co-pay amounts?
  4. What is my initial coverage limit?
  5. What pre-existing conditions are excluded from coverage?
  6. What is my maximum out of pocket cost?
  7. What are my monthly/yearly premiums?

Use the answers to these questions and other questions you may have (such as coverage for a spouse or loved one) and research plans carefully before choosing the Medicare insurance plan that best addresses your health needs. Medical insurance is not something to be ignored or taken lightly. Whether you’re fit as a fiddle or are enduring some serious health concerns, there is a coverage plan out there just for you.

About Author

LaDonna Dennis

LaDonna Dennis is the founder and creator of Mom Blog Society. She wears many hats. She is a Homemaker*Blogger*Crafter*Reader*Pinner*Friend*Animal Lover* Former writer of Frost Illustrated and, Cancer...SURVIVOR! LaDonna is happily married to the love of her life, the mother of 3 grown children and "Grams" to 3 grandchildren. She adores animals and has four furbabies: Makia ( a German Shepherd, whose mission in life is to be her attached to her hip) and Hachie, (an OCD Alaskan Malamute, and Akia (An Alaskan Malamute) who is just sweet as can be. And Sassy, a four-month-old German Shepherd who has quickly stolen her heart and become the most precious fur baby of all times. Aside from the humans in her life, LaDonna's fur babies are her world.

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