medicare supplement

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looking
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medicare supplement

Post by looking » Wed Oct 18, 2017 10:30 pm

I live California
Anyone has some experience selecting the Medigap option . and like to know which company carry best one. I'm having trouble choosing the Medigap option ( Medicare supplement )
The option F is good but very expensive monthly premium.

kaneohe
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by kaneohe » Thu Oct 19, 2017 12:46 am

https://interactive.web.insurance.ca.go ... :SESSION::

you can compare rates here for various plans

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celia
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by celia » Thu Oct 19, 2017 1:03 am

You can see what the difference is between the various Medigap plans in the chart at the bottom of this page.
https://www.medicare.gov/supplement-oth ... digap.html

Since all Medigap plans under the same letter have the same coverage and they are all secondary to Medicare, Medicare will calculate how much should be paid on each claim. All Medigap policies would have to cover the remainder that Medicare doesn't pay the same as the other Medigap policies with the same letter. So the only difference should be premiums.

However, if you are interested in determining which insurers are more financially sound, go to AMBest.com and create a free account to look up the financial stability of each insurer. A. M. Best is a company that monitors the financial health of insurers.

jbranx
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by jbranx » Thu Oct 19, 2017 2:00 am

We've been very happy with AARP's deal with United Health Care Plan F for several years. I understand that Plan F will go away soon for new applicants, and it appears most folks are recommending Plan G as the best remaining one. We went with F because it paid for overseas relocation. Admittedly the Medigap plans are expensive, but having a plan to cover the 20% that Medicare does not cover is pretty awesome. With our plan we almost never have to pay any deductibles or bills at all. The drug plans are also expensive (and complicated) if you have a higher income, but we've also had good luck with it since most of our drugs are generic-Tier 1.

mouses
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by mouses » Thu Oct 19, 2017 6:02 am

jbranx wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 2:00 am
We've been very happy with AARP's deal with United Health Care Plan F for several years. I understand that Plan F will go away soon for new applicants, and it appears most folks are recommending Plan G as the best remaining one. We went with F because it paid for overseas relocation. Admittedly the Medigap plans are expensive, but having a plan to cover the 20% that Medicare does not cover is pretty awesome. With our plan we almost never have to pay any deductibles or bills at all. The drug plans are also expensive (and complicated) if you have a higher income, but we've also had good luck with it since most of our drugs are generic-Tier 1.
Another vote for AARP Medigap Plan F.

Cheyenne
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by Cheyenne » Thu Oct 19, 2017 6:22 am

Does anyone have any experience with Plan "N"? I have spoken with people who have Plan "N" and they say they have never received any significant out-of-pocket medical bills even with heart surgery/rehab and hospitalization, etc. Where I live the premiums for Plan "N" are about 30% less than with Plan "F" which I have now.

neilpilot
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by neilpilot » Thu Oct 19, 2017 7:38 am

mouses wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 6:02 am
jbranx wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 2:00 am
We've been very happy with AARP's deal with United Health Care Plan F for several years. I understand that Plan F will go away soon for new applicants, and it appears most folks are recommending Plan G as the best remaining one. We went with F because it paid for overseas relocation. Admittedly the Medigap plans are expensive, but having a plan to cover the 20% that Medicare does not cover is pretty awesome. With our plan we almost never have to pay any deductibles or bills at all. The drug plans are also expensive (and complicated) if you have a higher income, but we've also had good luck with it since most of our drugs are generic-Tier 1.
Another vote for AARP Medigap Plan F.
I agree that either F or G are the best choice for many. However, I found AARP's premium for UHC's plan exceeded other provider's premiums for the SAME plan by a significant percentage. Also plan G is the same as F, except it doesn't cover Medicare deductibles, but I saved more on G's lower premium than that deductible would cost me.
Last edited by neilpilot on Fri Oct 20, 2017 6:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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cheese_breath
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by cheese_breath » Thu Oct 19, 2017 9:56 am

Only difference between F and N is plan N doesn't pay part B deductible or part B excess charge. DW had a stroke last April, and her plan N has forked out over $100K for her care.
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.

RudyS
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by RudyS » Thu Oct 19, 2017 10:42 am

cheese_breath wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 9:56 am
Only difference between F and N is plan N doesn't pay part B deductible or part B excess charge. DW had a stroke last April, and her plan N has forked out over $100K for her care.
My AARP UHC Plan N specifies that I pay up to a $20 fee for office visits. Deciding on N vs F or G should consider the likelihood of how many doctor visits you make in a year.

Cheyenne
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by Cheyenne » Thu Oct 19, 2017 10:44 am

I've learned that Medicare Part B deductible is $183.00 per year, and Part B excess charges are not allowed in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont. I'm in PA so I might consider switching from Plan F ($143/mo.) to Plan N ($92/mo.).

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cheese_breath
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by cheese_breath » Thu Oct 19, 2017 1:21 pm

RudyS wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 10:42 am
cheese_breath wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 9:56 am
Only difference between F and N is plan N doesn't pay part B deductible or part B excess charge. DW had a stroke last April, and her plan N has forked out over $100K for her care.
My AARP UHC Plan N specifies that I pay up to a $20 fee for office visits. Deciding on N vs F or G should consider the likelihood of how many doctor visits you make in a year.
Ah...I forgot about that. She's only been in hospitals and nursing homes since the stroke.
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.

mouses
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by mouses » Thu Oct 19, 2017 2:23 pm

cheese_breath wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 9:56 am
Only difference between F and N is plan N doesn't pay part B deductible or part B excess charge. DW had a stroke last April, and her plan N has forked out over $100K for her care.
I am a sink of money myself when it comes to Medicare. Thank God it is available.

mouses
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by mouses » Thu Oct 19, 2017 2:27 pm

Cheyenne wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 10:44 am
I've learned that Medicare Part B deductible is $183.00 per year, and Part B excess charges are not allowed in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont. I'm in PA so I might consider switching from Plan F ($143/mo.) to Plan N ($92/mo.).
Unfortunately, in Rhode Island at least, there is no enforcement mechanism for this, and no federal enforcement mechanism. I saw a doctor who said he did not handle insurance paperwork, so I was to pay by check and file for reimbursement. He charged way over the allowed excess amount, which I didn't know until later, and I was not able to get a penny back, despite contacting every agency I could think of.

btenny
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by btenny » Thu Oct 19, 2017 3:12 pm

I have F-HD with Blue Cross Blue Shield. I have coverage in California and Arizona as I snowbird. It is cheap because it has a high deductible of $2K per year. So it is big problem insurance. My wife and I have had it for 5 years and only hit the limit once. It costs $43ish per month for each of us. Regular Plan F is about $143. I figure Plan F-HD has saved us about $500 per year each net over the regular Plan F. I did not price Plan N at the time I started. I also choose BC/BS for the big company that has coverage in lot of states.

It is a hard decision. I suggest you carefully look at your options.

Good Luck.

Spirit Rider
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by Spirit Rider » Thu Oct 19, 2017 3:58 pm

mouses wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 2:27 pm
Unfortunately, in Rhode Island at least, there is no enforcement mechanism for this, and no federal enforcement mechanism. I saw a doctor who said he did not handle insurance paperwork, so I was to pay by check and file for reimbursement. He charged way over the allowed excess amount, which I didn't know until later, and I was not able to get a penny back, despite contacting every agency I could think of.
There are three categories of Medicare Providers:
  1. Participating Providers. They have agreed to accept assignment. They can not bill you above Medicare + Medigap reimbursement rates.
  2. Non-Participating Providers. They have not agreed to assignment for all patients. They do bill Medicare, but may bill 115% of their decreased 95% reimbursement rate.
  3. Opt-Out or Contract Providers. They do not accept nor bill Medicare. You sign a contract to that effect. You submit the bill yourself to Medicare. They reimburse you only the Medicare approved rate. You are 100% responsible for the difference.
From the discretion of your fact pattern, this doctor opted out of Medicare and you agreed to pay the full charges and seek the Medicare approved reimbursement.

This is not the same as the excess charges and has no limitations. Even having Plan F would not help in this case.

There is nothing any agency can do, because you accepted this at time of service. The only way you could avoid these charges is if you didn't sign something acknowledging this. Which would be highly unlikely, because the Opt-Out Providers are well aware of the requirements.

tpetsch
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by tpetsch » Thu Oct 19, 2017 6:27 pm

cheese_breath wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 9:56 am
Only difference between F and N is plan N doesn't pay part B deductible or part B excess charge. DW had a stroke last April, and her plan N has forked out over $100K for her care.

As I understand it, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island or Vermont, doctors who participate in Medicare are prohibited by law from charging more than the assigned medicare rate.

So, if I understand this correctly there is no need to purchase Plan "F" if you live in these states because there will be no Part Part B Excess Charges.

Plan N should provide the same coverage as F, except the only difference is you pay a copay at the DR office and emergency room?

Cheyenne
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by Cheyenne » Thu Oct 19, 2017 7:31 pm

So, if I understand this correctly there is no need to purchase Plan "F" if you live in these states because there will be no Part Part B Excess Charges.

Plan N should provide the same coverage as F, except the only difference is you pay a copay at the DR office and emergency room?
I've been studying that too. I believe that Plan F covers the deductible which I think is $183 per year. With Plan N you would have to cover that. Also, I think Plan F offers more coverage in foreign countries, such as paying to transport a patient home. I think I read that today somewhere but I might be wrong.

UPDATE:

I just switched from AARP United Healthcare Plan F ($143.80/mo.), to Plan N ($98.10/mo.) on the telephone. No underwriting.
Plan N differs from Plan F as follows:

Plan N

- $20 copays for Dr. Visits and $50 copay for ER visits if not admitted to hospital.
- Must meet deductible (at this time $183/yr.). This can go up.
- Must pay Excess Charges, but Excess Charges are not permitted in PA where I live and in the five other states listed earlier.
- Can switch to other plans anytime without underwriting (at this time).

These premiums reflect a 30% discount due to my age of 65. The discount decreases 3% per year going forward.

tpetsch
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by tpetsch » Fri Oct 20, 2017 3:57 pm

Cheyenne wrote:
Thu Oct 19, 2017 7:31 pm
So, if I understand this correctly there is no need to purchase Plan "F" if you live in these states because there will be no Part Part B Excess Charges.

Plan N should provide the same coverage as F, except the only difference is you pay a copay at the DR office and emergency room?
I've been studying that too. I believe that Plan F covers the deductible which I think is $183 per year. With Plan N you would have to cover that. Also, I think Plan F offers more coverage in foreign countries, such as paying to transport a patient home. I think I read that today somewhere but I might be wrong.

UPDATE:

I just switched from AARP United Healthcare Plan F ($143.80/mo.), to Plan N ($98.10/mo.) on the telephone. No underwriting.
Plan N differs from Plan F as follows:

Plan N

- $20 copays for Dr. Visits and $50 copay for ER visits if not admitted to hospital.
- Must meet deductible (at this time $183/yr.). This can go up.
- Must pay Excess Charges, but Excess Charges are not permitted in PA where I live and in the five other states listed earlier.
- Can switch to other plans anytime without underwriting (at this time).

These premiums reflect a 30% discount due to my age of 65. The discount decreases 3% per year going forward.
Congrats in making your choice.
I'm moving in the same direction, Plan "N". Did you also choose a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan in addition to plan N?

Cheyenne
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by Cheyenne » Fri Oct 20, 2017 4:11 pm

Did you also choose a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan in addition to plan N?
Yes, I have the Humana (Walmart) plan for $17/mo. Scripts need to be filled at Walmart to qualify for the reduced prices. I'm not a snob but I'll admit I was a little reluctant to depend on them for meds. However, on a positive note you can find one everywhere and the Pharmacists are licensed.

blmarsha123
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by blmarsha123 » Fri Oct 20, 2017 5:23 pm

Cheyenne wrote:
Fri Oct 20, 2017 4:11 pm
Did you also choose a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan in addition to plan N?
Yes, I have the Humana (Walmart) plan for $17/mo. Scripts need to be filled at Walmart to qualify for the reduced prices. I'm not a snob but I'll admit I was a little reluctant to depend on them for meds. However, on a positive note you can find one everywhere and the Pharmacists are licensed.
I have the Humana (Walmart) $17 plan too. I get my prescriptions filled at Walgreens, CVS, King Soopers, and so on at the specified co-pay. (That is, I don't pay any different at the others than I would at Walmart.) When I first signed up for the Humana plan, I thought that I had to get my prescriptions filled at Walmart. No so.

Cheyenne
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by Cheyenne » Fri Oct 20, 2017 7:07 pm

When I first signed up for the Humana plan, I thought that I had to get my prescriptions filled at Walmart. No so.
Thanks for that. That's interesting. I'll have to do my homework. I only filled one script since I've been on this plan. It was for an Albuterol inhaler, and force of habit led me to the Weis Pharmacy at the supermarket where I had always got scripts filled. I remember it was pricey so apparently they are not part of the network.

kaneohe
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by kaneohe » Fri Oct 20, 2017 9:05 pm

blmarsha123 wrote:
Fri Oct 20, 2017 5:23 pm
Cheyenne wrote:
Fri Oct 20, 2017 4:11 pm
Did you also choose a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan in addition to plan N?
Yes, I have the Humana (Walmart) plan for $17/mo. Scripts need to be filled at Walmart to qualify for the reduced prices. I'm not a snob but I'll admit I was a little reluctant to depend on them for meds. However, on a positive note you can find one everywhere and the Pharmacists are licensed.
I have the Humana (Walmart) $17 plan too. I get my prescriptions filled at Walgreens, CVS, King Soopers, and so on at the specified co-pay. (That is, I don't pay any different at the others than I would at Walmart.) When I first signed up for the Humana plan, I thought that I had to get my prescriptions filled at Walmart. No so.
That may depend on what drug you are getting. https://www.humana.com/medicare/product ... walmart-rx suggests that
Walmart is a preferred pharmacy and my experience is that on some Rx, Walmart is cheaper but it isn't always. My other recent experience
is this Walmart seems to be out of something so I have to then go to another or perhaps both don't have it. Then I have to get Rx sent again to
Walgreens which is a pain so I am inclined to just go to Walgreens now.

Cheyenne
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by Cheyenne » Sat Oct 21, 2017 7:22 am

Since I'm new to this, is it customary to call pharmacies to check prices and co-pays?

kaneohe
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by kaneohe » Sat Oct 21, 2017 8:53 am

Cheyenne wrote:
Sat Oct 21, 2017 7:22 am
Since I'm new to this, is it customary to call pharmacies to check prices and co-pays?
perhaps more easily done at the medicare.gov website where you would go to choose a Rx drug plan . There is an annual enrollment period each
year about this time. Input the drug you are interested in and the website will give you the price (both for mail order and local pharmacies).
Once you get the listing of the various plans, click on the one you are interested in and then the details pop up.

Cheyenne
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by Cheyenne » Sat Oct 21, 2017 11:45 am

Thanks.

blmarsha123
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by blmarsha123 » Sat Oct 21, 2017 12:41 pm

kaneohe wrote:
Fri Oct 20, 2017 9:05 pm
blmarsha123 wrote:
Fri Oct 20, 2017 5:23 pm
Cheyenne wrote:
Fri Oct 20, 2017 4:11 pm
Did you also choose a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan in addition to plan N?
Yes, I have the Humana (Walmart) plan for $17/mo. Scripts need to be filled at Walmart to qualify for the reduced prices. I'm not a snob but I'll admit I was a little reluctant to depend on them for meds. However, on a positive note you can find one everywhere and the Pharmacists are licensed.
I have the Humana (Walmart) $17 plan too. I get my prescriptions filled at Walgreens, CVS, King Soopers, and so on at the specified co-pay. (That is, I don't pay any different at the others than I would at Walmart.) When I first signed up for the Humana plan, I thought that I had to get my prescriptions filled at Walmart. No so.
That may depend on what drug you are getting. https://www.humana.com/medicare/product ... walmart-rx suggests that
Walmart is a preferred pharmacy and my experience is that on some Rx, Walmart is cheaper but it isn't always. My other recent experience
is this Walmart seems to be out of something so I have to then go to another or perhaps both don't have it. Then I have to get Rx sent again to
Walgreens which is a pain so I am inclined to just go to Walgreens now.
Excellent point about the preferred list and Walmart.

My only long term prescription is for a Tier 1 statin, which I actually get by mail order (90 day supply) from Humana. I did get three one time prescriptions for oral surgery earlier this year. Checked around and on price, ended up at King Soopers.

ResearchMed
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by ResearchMed » Sat Oct 21, 2017 12:54 pm

looking wrote:
Wed Oct 18, 2017 10:30 pm
I live California
Anyone has some experience selecting the Medigap option . and like to know which company carry best one. I'm having trouble choosing the Medigap option ( Medicare supplement )
The option F is good but very expensive monthly premium.
Have you received any assistance with your question?
Do you have any follow up questions?

A lot of people have posted to try to help you.

RM
This signature is a placebo. You are in the control group.

Almost there
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by Almost there » Sat Oct 21, 2017 1:35 pm

To find the right supplemental plan provider, I contacted Senior Savings Network who are located on the East Coast. 800-729-9590
They were very helpful. They suggested Aetna since they don't raise or lower their prices every year. Have been very pleased with them.

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LadyGeek
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Re: medicare supplment

Post by LadyGeek » Sat Oct 21, 2017 1:39 pm

This thread is now in the Personal Finance (Not Investing) forum (Medicare). I fixed the spelling in the thread title.
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CWRadio
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Re: medicare supplement

Post by CWRadio » Sat Oct 21, 2017 2:05 pm

Take a look at this web site to compare Medigap plans in your ZiP code

https://www.freemedicarereport.com/ Just go to run report.

Remember there is more than current price that is important when you pick a plan. Take a look a previous rate increase, etc. Not sure if type of pricing matters (community, issued or attained age).
Paul

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