Medicare Supplement Companies

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rbslos36
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Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by rbslos36 » Sat Jul 28, 2018 7:21 pm

I am going on Medicare soon and am wondering which of the following companies, if any, you can recommend. How have the price increases been on your policy? I plan on purchasing Plan G from either Cigna, Mutual of Omaha or AARP United Healthcare. Cigna and Mutual of Omaha are around $105. The AARP plan is $123.00.

Gratefully,
RB

Chaconne
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by Chaconne » Sat Jul 28, 2018 7:44 pm

I don't have a ton of experience, having been on Medicare for only a couple of years, but I've been extremely satisfied with the AARP United Healthcare supplement (Plan L). Of course, I cannot speak for the others. It's odd that AARP/United is not your lowest-cost alternative, because it has been for just about everyone I know (perhaps it has to do with our localities). For me AARP/United has worked without a glitch. Best of luck, whichever you choose.

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steve roy
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by steve roy » Sat Jul 28, 2018 8:01 pm

I got a USAA Plan. Cost-competitive, and it fills in the "Medicare gap".

CedarWaxWing
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by CedarWaxWing » Sat Jul 28, 2018 8:06 pm

hesson11 wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 7:44 pm
I don't have a ton of experience, having been on Medicare for only a couple of years, but I've been extremely satisfied with the AARP United Healthcare supplement (Plan L). Of course, I cannot speak for the others. It's odd that AARP/United is not your lowest-cost alternative, because it has been for just about everyone I know (perhaps it has to do with our localities). For me AARP/United has worked without a glitch. Best of luck, whichever you choose.
I avoided United because they, and Cigna, are among the most complained about health insurance companies in the USA, according to the broker I spoke with about 3 years ago. (I have had experience with Cigna and United both... and was happy with neither, but not a medicare policy.)

Wilderness Librarian
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by Wilderness Librarian » Sat Jul 28, 2018 11:48 pm

I went on Plan G (issue age based) from Mutual of Omaha last year. Before I did I checked the complaint ratios on the website of my state Insurance Commission. M of O had no complaints filed for the interval listed (3 years I think). They were about mid priced for the plan G's offered for my area. I figured rightly or wrongly the lowest priced companies should be avoided - there may be something really wrong or they may back out of my geographic area for some reason. I signed up entirely on my own online even though the company wanted people to go through an agent. So far so good. Just got a form letter in the mail a few days ago. My rates go up about 6% after 1st yr. That can happen with issue age basis in accordance with overall costs.

dennisbyron
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by dennisbyron » Sun Jul 29, 2018 7:19 am

rbslos36 wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 7:21 pm
I am going on Medicare soon and am wondering which of the following companies, if any, you can recommend. How have the price increases been on your policy? I plan on purchasing Plan G from either Cigna, Mutual of Omaha or AARP United Healthcare. Cigna and Mutual of Omaha are around $105. The AARP plan is $123.00.

Gratefully,
RB
Private Medigap indemnity policies are state regulated so the answer to your question might vary widely based on your state. As someone suggests, check with your Department of Insurance (or whatever it is called in your state). There are even some rules in some states as to state of legal residence when you first join vs. changing later vs...

I think initial-year discounts vary state by state as well. You didn't mention them so perhaps your state does not have them

kaneohe
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by kaneohe » Sun Jul 29, 2018 8:27 am

CedarWaxWing wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 8:06 pm
hesson11 wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 7:44 pm
I don't have a ton of experience, having been on Medicare for only a couple of years, but I've been extremely satisfied with the AARP United Healthcare supplement (Plan L). Of course, I cannot speak for the others. It's odd that AARP/United is not your lowest-cost alternative, because it has been for just about everyone I know (perhaps it has to do with our localities). For me AARP/United has worked without a glitch. Best of luck, whichever you choose.
I avoided United because they, and Cigna, are among the most complained about health insurance companies in the USA, according to the broker I spoke with about 3 years ago. (I have had experience with Cigna and United both... and was happy with neither, but not a medicare policy.)
7th yr on AARP UHC Medigap (also had UHC prior to that before/after retirement----- non Medicare)). Never had a problem with them. Medigap premiums in the last 4 yrs have increased 5-6% per yr......this includes the 3% decrease in discount per yr so the underlying increase is 2-3%/yr.

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dm200
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by dm200 » Sun Jul 29, 2018 2:45 pm

rbslos36 wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 7:21 pm
I am going on Medicare soon and am wondering which of the following companies, if any, you can recommend. How have the price increases been on your policy? I plan on purchasing Plan G from either Cigna, Mutual of Omaha or AARP United Healthcare. Cigna and Mutual of Omaha are around $105. The AARP plan is $123.00.
Gratefully,
RB
If you have not already done so, I recommend fully evaluating Medicare Advantage (MA) plans offered in your area. With an MA plan, you do not buy a Supplement (Medigap).

3feetpete
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by 3feetpete » Sun Jul 29, 2018 6:47 pm

Look at the best medicare plan for you and then go with the cheapest insurance company that supplys that plan in your area. My experience with Medicare is that other than your monthly payment there will be no interaction between you and the supplement insurer. Medicare tells them what to pay and they pay it. So there no reason to go with anything but the least expensive.

Regarding which plan to choose, I favor high deductible plan F for people that are relatively healthy. Medicare part B covers the first 80% so the supplement insurance is only covering the remaining 20%. In my case high deductible plan F saves me 1,000 per year in the cost of premiums vs a low deductible Plan F. At 20%, I would have to incur $5,000 in medical expenses before I offset that $1,000 savings. That's very unlikely for me. Plan F high deductible has a deductable of $2,240 so I would have to incur over 11k in medical costs before the supplement insurer has to pay a single dollar. In the event that I did have a very high medical year I could be out of pocket as much as $2240 but since I saved $1,000 in insurance premiums it's really not that bad.

jimmieg
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by jimmieg » Mon Jul 30, 2018 3:57 pm

kaneohe wrote:
Sun Jul 29, 2018 8:27 am
CedarWaxWing wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 8:06 pm
hesson11 wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 7:44 pm
I don't have a ton of experience, having been on Medicare for only a couple of years, but I've been extremely satisfied with the AARP United Healthcare supplement (Plan L). Of course, I cannot speak for the others. It's odd that AARP/United is not your lowest-cost alternative, because it has been for just about everyone I know (perhaps it has to do with our localities). For me AARP/United has worked without a glitch. Best of luck, whichever you choose.
I avoided United because they, and Cigna, are among the most complained about health insurance companies in the USA, according to the broker I spoke with about 3 years ago. (I have had experience with Cigna and United both... and was happy with neither, but not a medicare policy.)
7th yr on AARP UHC Medigap (also had UHC prior to that before/after retirement----- non Medicare)). Never had a problem with them. Medigap premiums in the last 4 yrs have increased 5-6% per yr......this includes the 3% decrease in discount per yr so the underlying increase is 2-3%/yr.
Another vote to examine Medicare Advantage plans.
Costs vary from county to county - here in LA county, the cost is $0 - really! You just keep paying your Medicare part B.

Been doing it 5 years.

Broken Man 1999
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by Broken Man 1999 » Mon Jul 30, 2018 4:23 pm

Several years ago I had a UHC Medicare Advantage plan, and it was fine.

My MIL had the AARP United Health Care Medicare Advantage plan for the last few years of her life, and the plan worked very well for her COPD issues. Her premium was zero, after she paid her Part B, and a penalty for not having had a RX plan when she had a Medicare Supplement plan.

Currently wife and I are on A Humana Medicare PPO plan offered thru my retiree benefit. First month for wife, but I have had the plan for several years now.

No issues with Humana plan, and I had a lot of medical issues last year, so lots of interaction with the insurance company.

Broken Man 1999
“If I cannot drink Bourbon and smoke cigars in Heaven than I shall not go. " -Mark Twain

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dm200
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by dm200 » Mon Jul 30, 2018 5:24 pm

jimmieg wrote:
Mon Jul 30, 2018 3:57 pm
kaneohe wrote:
Sun Jul 29, 2018 8:27 am
CedarWaxWing wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 8:06 pm
hesson11 wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 7:44 pm
I don't have a ton of experience, having been on Medicare for only a couple of years, but I've been extremely satisfied with the AARP United Healthcare supplement (Plan L). Of course, I cannot speak for the others. It's odd that AARP/United is not your lowest-cost alternative, because it has been for just about everyone I know (perhaps it has to do with our localities). For me AARP/United has worked without a glitch. Best of luck, whichever you choose.
I avoided United because they, and Cigna, are among the most complained about health insurance companies in the USA, according to the broker I spoke with about 3 years ago. (I have had experience with Cigna and United both... and was happy with neither, but not a medicare policy.)
7th yr on AARP UHC Medigap (also had UHC prior to that before/after retirement----- non Medicare)). Never had a problem with them. Medigap premiums in the last 4 yrs have increased 5-6% per yr......this includes the 3% decrease in discount per yr so the underlying increase is 2-3%/yr.
Another vote to examine Medicare Advantage plans.
Costs vary from county to county - here in LA county, the cost is $0 - really! You just keep paying your Medicare part B.
Been doing it 5 years.
I have been on the Kaiser Medicare plan here for 7 1/2 years. Very, very happy - low cost and high quality.

CedarWaxWing
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by CedarWaxWing » Tue Jul 31, 2018 1:00 pm

[/quote]

I have been on the Kaiser Medicare plan here for 7 1/2 years. Very, very happy - low cost and high quality.
[/quote]

Kaiser is very good on preventative medicine treatment. They do keep costs low.. but sometimes there is another steep price to pay for that.

Case in point:

I happen to know a Kaiser MD who had a relatively sudden onset of sever hypertension, in spite of the fact that he was otherwise fit and athletic with no obvious reason for the sudden change in his health. The internal med folks simply wanted to treat him with a series of hypertension meds, which did not effectively treat his hypertension. Rather than beginning an in depth diagnostic workup as to WHY he had severe hypertension (dangerously severe) they simply wanted to add more meds to his treatment... which did not work well.

He asked for a more in depth diagnostic workup, which they were reluctant to do.. but eventually agreed and I non malignant tumor was found that could be removed with a big incision (and a minimum 3 month recovery period before getting back to work) or a laparoscopic procedure and therefore a very small incision that would allow him to be back to work withing two weeks with a great deal less risk and pain.

Kaiser was not able to do that type of laparoscopy withing their own system, and they refused to let him have that done outside of their system... so he eventually had it done at his own expense. The restriction of having to stay in the Kaiser system prevented their paying for having his procedure done in the safest way with the fastest recovery is a way that would get him back on his feet most expeditiously.

Cheaper is often better... until you get sick, and when that happens having access to a wide variety of options can be invaluable. The delay in a diagnosis could have happened anywhere perhaps, but denial of the laparoscopic surgery for his problem should not have happened, as it is available in most any major metropolitan area, but Kaiser was not capable of doing that in their system. Refusal to refer to someone else was based on costs o Kaiser, and was definitely not in the best medical interests of that patient.

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dm200
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by dm200 » Tue Jul 31, 2018 1:26 pm

CedarWaxWing wrote:
Tue Jul 31, 2018 1:00 pm
I have been on the Kaiser Medicare plan here for 7 1/2 years. Very, very happy - low cost and high quality.
Kaiser is very good on preventative medicine treatment. They do keep costs low.. but sometimes there is another steep price to pay for that.

Case in point:
I happen to know a Kaiser MD who had a relatively sudden onset of sever hypertension, in spite of the fact that he was otherwise fit and athletic with no obvious reason for the sudden change in his health. The internal med folks simply wanted to treat him with a series of hypertension meds, which did not effectively treat his hypertension. Rather than beginning an in depth diagnostic workup as to WHY he had severe hypertension (dangerously severe) they simply wanted to add more meds to his treatment... which did not work well.
He asked for a more in depth diagnostic workup, which they were reluctant to do.. but eventually agreed and I non malignant tumor was found that could be removed with a big incision (and a minimum 3 month recovery period before getting back to work) or a laparoscopic procedure and therefore a very small incision that would allow him to be back to work withing two weeks with a great deal less risk and pain.
Kaiser was not able to do that type of laparoscopy withing their own system, and they refused to let him have that done outside of their system... so he eventually had it done at his own expense. The restriction of having to stay in the Kaiser system prevented their paying for having his procedure done in the safest way with the fastest recovery is a way that would get him back on his feet most expeditiously.
Cheaper is often better... until you get sick, and when that happens having access to a wide variety of options can be invaluable. The delay in a diagnosis could have happened anywhere perhaps, but denial of the laparoscopic surgery for his problem should not have happened, as it is available in most any major metropolitan area, but Kaiser was not capable of doing that in their system. Refusal to refer to someone else was based on costs o Kaiser, and was definitely not in the best medical interests of that patient.

Interesting that the patient was a Kaiser Physician. Might there be more to this story?

I/we have been with Kaiser about half of the past 40 years - going away from Kaiser only because of employment insurance.

So, I/we have experiences both with Kaiser and outside - for similar situations. We have never experienced a lower level of treatment or referral. In fact, in some cases, aggressively addressing certain situations (more cost) was actually more with Kaiser. My only "bad" surgical experience was with a surgeon when I was not with Kaiser.

It is different with Kaiser today (in this area), but my first Colonoscopy was at a time I was with Kaiser - but they referred me (and paid for) an outside Gastroenterologist.

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dm200
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by dm200 » Tue Jul 31, 2018 1:58 pm

Let me add this comment/experience with Kaiser.

One (of many) factor in reducing health/medical risks is how quickly and correctly the person is referred to and evaluated/treated by the applicable specialist. My wife and I have encountered situations where such referrals were needed and done - and I am convinced that in each case we saw the appropriate specialist more quickly that would have happened in almost every other (outside Kaiser) situation. In one case, my wife saw here PCP at 10:00 am and her situation required referral to a surgeon. My wife saw the surgeon about two hours later.

Chaconne
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by Chaconne » Tue Jul 31, 2018 8:20 pm

CedarWaxWing wrote:
Tue Jul 31, 2018 1:00 pm
Kaiser is very good on preventative medicine treatment. They do keep costs low.. but sometimes there is another steep price to pay for that.

Case in point:

I happen to know a Kaiser MD who had a relatively sudden onset of sever hypertension, in spite of the fact that he was otherwise fit and athletic with no obvious reason for the sudden change in his health. The internal med folks simply wanted to treat him with a series of hypertension meds, which did not effectively treat his hypertension. Rather than beginning an in depth diagnostic workup as to WHY he had severe hypertension (dangerously severe) they simply wanted to add more meds to his treatment... which did not work well.

He asked for a more in depth diagnostic workup, which they were reluctant to do.. but eventually agreed and I non malignant tumor was found that could be removed with a big incision (and a minimum 3 month recovery period before getting back to work) or a laparoscopic procedure and therefore a very small incision that would allow him to be back to work withing two weeks with a great deal less risk and pain.

Kaiser was not able to do that type of laparoscopy withing their own system, and they refused to let him have that done outside of their system... so he eventually had it done at his own expense. The restriction of having to stay in the Kaiser system prevented their paying for having his procedure done in the safest way with the fastest recovery is a way that would get him back on his feet most expeditiously.

Cheaper is often better... until you get sick, and when that happens having access to a wide variety of options can be invaluable. The delay in a diagnosis could have happened anywhere perhaps, but denial of the laparoscopic surgery for his problem should not have happened, as it is available in most any major metropolitan area, but Kaiser was not capable of doing that in their system. Refusal to refer to someone else was based on costs o Kaiser, and was definitely not in the best medical interests of that patient.
Was this MD in a Medicare Advantage plan, or did he have a Medicare Supplemental policy?

CedarWaxWing
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by CedarWaxWing » Tue Jul 31, 2018 8:34 pm

I have detailed as much as I am willing to, in order to preserve the identity of the patient, who is also a friend. The issues were straight forward, as stated. I am not saying Kaiser is not a good place. I have no doubt that they have good physicians, but the system is sometimes a problem to my perspective, and that case was not a physician issue as much as an administrative issue. That event occurred a few years ago, in a major metropolitan area. The benefit of laparoscopy was very clear, and the only reason to not approve that was cost to Kaiser. The final outcome was good, but the best course of treatment was not covered by the insurance company, when it was medically justified to do so.

My opinion is that if cost of insurance is the major factor ... Kaiser may be the best choice. If you love Kaiser there is nothing fundamentally wrong with Kaiser and I would not wish for anyone to take my message to mean that it is a bad place to get medical care. (My spouse worked there BTW as a medical provider.)

If you (I) want the most flexibility to participate in the way you will be treated when something unusual comes up, one may wish to pick a system that makes it your choice to seek care outside the system or not when something unusual happens.

If you plan on never having a problem that needs anything that requires the newest state of the art treatment that is not available in every system... Kaiser is as good as anywhere else.

No place, no system, is better than every other place/system at everything it does, nor is is possible to be.
No system is pushing the state of the art limits on everything... nor should they all be doing that.
It is useful to know the limits of the plan you chose, and its advantages.

drawpoker
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by drawpoker » Tue Jul 31, 2018 10:19 pm

CedarWaxWing wrote:
Tue Jul 31, 2018 8:34 pm
...have detailed as much as I am willing to, in order to preserve the identity of the patient.....That event occurred a few years ago, in a major metropolitan area. The benefit of laparoscopy was very clear, and the only reason to not approve that was cost to Kaiser. The final outcome was good, but the best course of treatment was not covered by the insurance company, when it was medically justified to do so......
My opinion is that if cost of insurance is the major factor ... Kaiser may be the best choice. ....If you plan on never having a problem that needs anything that requires the newest state of the art treatment.......
The account of your friend's unhappy experience with Kaiser is indeed eye-opening. However, as another poster asked, is this directly related to Medicare supplement insurance? Or Medicare Advantage? Or, since you described your friend as a "Kaiser doctor", was he not yet retired or on Medicare, but, rather a rank-and-file Kaiser employee who had signed up for health insurance for himself (and dependents) through his job? That would put him in an entirely different Kaiser HMO, Or PPO, than their Medicare Advantage plans.

Would make it more meaningful to the thread if we had this information. Think you could furnish this without compromising any privacy concerns for your friend.

Getting back to the ranch here - Yep, agree 100% with your view that if cost is the major factor, some folks will have to go with Kaiser, or some other MA plan.

But, for those folks who have the $$ set aside, this dialogue reminds of another thread we had here on this very subject of choosing Medicare plans a while back.

Basically, the thrust of that discussion was, Which Way Would You Rather Die?

Die with More Money (going for El Cheapo MA instead of Medigap) Or,
Die with Less Money (paying more, both upfront & for many years after by buying Medigap)
I believe that thread was titled something like ------
"Why Grabbing Medicare Plan F As Soon As You Can Get Your Hands On It" will save you lots of worry and regrets.

After all, there is a real/value/cost/benefit/analysis/ etc that can be assigned to that certain goods or services commodity known as "sleeping well at night" 8-)

Eureka
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by Eureka » Wed Aug 01, 2018 3:10 am

Medicare supplement premiums differ by ZIP code. A good agent who sells plans from multiple companies can tell you the least expensive company for each letter of plan and the average premium increases for the past few years. He or she can also give you the current premiums for people of other ages.

I turn 65 September 1 and got this information from an agency in Texas called Boomer Benefits. Mutual of Omaha and Western United (a division of Manhattan Life) had the lowest Plan G premiums in my ZIP code at about $108 a month. Recent premiums hikes were identical. I went with Western United. Probably could have flipped a coin. If I had wanted Plan F, other companies would have been cheaper.

I’ve never been to Texas, but Boomer Benefits is licensed in 47 states. I’m sure other agencies could supply the same information. https://boomerbenefits.com/

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dm200
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by dm200 » Wed Aug 01, 2018 11:28 am

No place, no system, is better than every other place/system at everything it does, nor is is possible to be.
No system is pushing the state of the art limits on everything... nor should they all be doing that.
It is useful to know the limits of the plan you chose, and its advantages.
Well stated.

In my opinion and experience - every insurance company and every medical delivery provider has some sort of bureaucratic "process". Then, once you figure it out - they change it :oops: I am convinced that part of my wife's and my satisfaction (BOTH medical and financial) with Kaiser is that we have figured out the ways to optimize the care we receive.

For example, while I cannot prove it - I am convinced that I receive more prompt responses from my PCP of the last seven years than average - in great part because of my full cooperation (not always full agreement) with her AND my very detailed attention to everything.

drawpoker
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by drawpoker » Wed Aug 01, 2018 1:30 pm

Eureka wrote:
Wed Aug 01, 2018 3:10 am
Medicare supplement premiums differ by ZIP code. A good agent who sells plans from multiple companies can tell you the least expensive company for each letter of plan and the average premium increases for the past few years. He or she can also give you the current premiums for people of other ages.

I turn 65 September 1 and got this information from an agency in Texas called Boomer Benefits. Mutual of Omaha and Western United (a division of Manhattan Life) had the lowest Plan G premiums in my ZIP code at about $108 a month. Recent premiums hikes were identical. I went with Western United. Probably could have flipped a coin. If I had wanted Plan F, other companies would have been cheaper.

I’ve never been to Texas, but Boomer Benefits is licensed in 47 states. I’m sure other agencies could supply the same information. https://boomerbenefits.com/
A bit misleading. The zip codes are true for Illinois, NY and a handful of others. For most parts of the U.S, though, it goes by the state as a whole.

A "good agent", as you say, is also paid by commission. And, the commission rates vary a good deal among the Medigap insurers. Why put your trust in an unknown when you can do the very same research yourself on all companies?

Here's the look-up chart for the Chicago area. (For the other parts of Illinois, find the appropriate other charts)

https://www2.illinois.gov/aging/ship/Do ... SupWeb.pdf

Also, keep in mind, when comparing companies writing Medigap policies, the "least expensive" is not always what it appears. An issue-age rated policy may be a bit more costly in the beginning (when you turn 65) but over the course of many years it has the lowest level of annual increases. Accordingly, when you are 75 or 80, you will be paying far less monthly for that type policy than those of same age who bought attained age rated policy.

Admittedly, the issue age ones are becoming more and more difficult to find, attained age is the usual offering.

CedarWaxWing
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by CedarWaxWing » Tue Aug 07, 2018 1:25 pm

drawpoker wrote:
Tue Jul 31, 2018 10:19 pm
CedarWaxWing wrote:
Tue Jul 31, 2018 8:34 pm
...have detailed as much as I am willing to, in order to preserve the identity of the patient.....That event occurred a few years ago, in a major metropolitan area. The benefit of laparoscopy was very clear, and the only reason to not approve that was cost to Kaiser. The final outcome was good, but the best course of treatment was not covered by the insurance company, when it was medically justified to do so......
My opinion is that if cost of insurance is the major factor ... Kaiser may be the best choice. ....If you plan on never having a problem that needs anything that requires the newest state of the art treatment.......
The account of your friend's unhappy experience with Kaiser is indeed eye-opening. However, as another poster asked, is this directly related to Medicare supplement insurance? Or Medicare Advantage? Or, since you described your friend as a "Kaiser doctor", was he not yet retired or on Medicare, but, rather a rank-and-file Kaiser employee who had signed up for health insurance for himself (and dependents) through his job? That would put him in an entirely different Kaiser HMO, Or PPO, than their Medicare Advantage plans.

Would make it more meaningful to the thread if we had this information. Think you could furnish this without compromising any privacy concerns for your friend.

Getting back to the ranch here - Yep, agree 100% with your view that if cost is the major factor, some folks will have to go with Kaiser, or some other MA plan.

But, for those folks who have the $$ set aside, this dialogue reminds of another thread we had here on this very subject of choosing Medicare plans a while back.

Basically, the thrust of that discussion was, Which Way Would You Rather Die?

Die with More Money (going for El Cheapo MA instead of Medigap) Or,
Die with Less Money (paying more, both upfront & for many years after by buying Medigap)
I believe that thread was titled something like ------
"Why Grabbing Medicare Plan F As Soon As You Can Get Your Hands On It" will save you lots of worry and regrets.

After all, there is a real/value/cost/benefit/analysis/ etc that can be assigned to that certain goods or services commodity known as "sleeping well at night" 8-)
To Clarify, as asked: That person was a Kaiser doc, not on a medicare plan. I don't think it would have changed the story one bit if the plan had been a medicare plan.

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munemaker
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by munemaker » Tue Aug 07, 2018 1:45 pm

dm200 wrote:
Sun Jul 29, 2018 2:45 pm
rbslos36 wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 7:21 pm
I am going on Medicare soon and am wondering which of the following companies, if any, you can recommend. How have the price increases been on your policy? I plan on purchasing Plan G from either Cigna, Mutual of Omaha or AARP United Healthcare. Cigna and Mutual of Omaha are around $105. The AARP plan is $123.00.
Gratefully,
RB
If you have not already done so, I recommend fully evaluating Medicare Advantage (MA) plans offered in your area. With an MA plan, you do not buy a Supplement (Medigap).
Yes, definitely consider Advantage plans. Seems like you get a lot more for your money.

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dm200
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by dm200 » Tue Aug 07, 2018 2:43 pm

To Clarify, as asked: That person was a Kaiser doc, not on a medicare plan. I don't think it would have changed the story one bit if the plan had been a medicare plan.
I agree - Our very positive experience with Kaiser (now on Medicare) seems the same - whether on Medicare, employer plan or individual/Obamacare. Of course, the copays, amounts charged for certain things - and some "paperwork" do differ.

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dm200
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by dm200 » Tue Aug 07, 2018 2:45 pm

munemaker wrote:
Tue Aug 07, 2018 1:45 pm
dm200 wrote:
Sun Jul 29, 2018 2:45 pm
rbslos36 wrote:
Sat Jul 28, 2018 7:21 pm
I am going on Medicare soon and am wondering which of the following companies, if any, you can recommend. How have the price increases been on your policy? I plan on purchasing Plan G from either Cigna, Mutual of Omaha or AARP United Healthcare. Cigna and Mutual of Omaha are around $105. The AARP plan is $123.00.
Gratefully,
RB
If you have not already done so, I recommend fully evaluating Medicare Advantage (MA) plans offered in your area. With an MA plan, you do not buy a Supplement (Medigap).
Yes, definitely consider Advantage plans. Seems like you get a lot more for your money.
This is not universally true - since some areas have no Advantage plans or just terrible (for some participants) plans. Other areas, like ours, seem to have many excellent plans - with low/modest net charges/costs for most participants.

miles monroe
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by miles monroe » Tue Aug 07, 2018 3:02 pm

couple quick points from someone who does not claim to be a medicare expert.

if you travel quite a bit you don't want an advantage plan as you may find yourself out of network.

what i found odd last year was the pricing re plan f and plan g. the only difference between the 2 plans (other than the fact that f is going to be closed to new members in a few years) is plan f pays the $183 deductible. yet -- the cost for plan f almost always cost more $183 in annual premiums than plan g among companies that offered both.

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dm200
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by dm200 » Tue Aug 07, 2018 3:05 pm

miles monroe wrote:
Tue Aug 07, 2018 3:02 pm
couple quick points from someone who does not claim to be a medicare expert.
if you travel quite a bit you don't want an advantage plan as you may find yourself out of network.
what i found odd last year was the pricing re plan f and plan g. the only difference between the 2 plans (other than the fact that f is going to be closed to new members in a few years) is plan f pays the $183 deductible. yet -- the cost for plan f almost always cost more $183 in annual premiums than plan g among companies that offered both.
It all depends on the details of the Advantage plan. Mine, for example, covers emergency care outside the area -

rbslos36
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by rbslos36 » Wed Aug 08, 2018 8:43 pm

I'm only looking at Medigap policies (Plan G) and not Advantage policies. The companies with the lowest rates are Cigna, and Mutual of Omaha followed by AARP United Healthcare which is higher.

Any experience with Cigna or Mutual of Omaha?
RB

drawpoker
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by drawpoker » Wed Aug 08, 2018 8:56 pm

Okay, you know you want Plan G. So you made that decision.

Now, of the companies in your state that offer G, are any of them issue-age rated?

We know all AARP-UHC Medicare supplements are community rated. Is Mutual of Omaha and the other one you are considering using attained-age rating system?

Since you know you can safely rule out Medicare Advantage, just focus now on trying to nail a Plan G at open enrollment from a company that uses the issue-age method.

(If you don't understand the difference, do some Googling. We have been over that many times, over and over, and I get weary explaining it here for the umpteenth time. :oops:

As far as seeking people with "experience" with the companies you specifically asked about, there really is no interface with the customer and his Medigap insurer. If Medicare covers the claim, the Medigap does also. There is no hassling or argument about whether a claim is "covered" with the Medigap insurance company. They just have to accurately compute your OOP towards your deductible. Since that is only $183, it would be difficult for a big company to screw up there.

Some single people (I assume you are one?) just dislike Mutual of Omaha intensely for being the first big Medigap insurer to offer the "2-person discount" price. For married couples who both purchase their Medigap policies from them.
This, of course, enormously pissed off singles, who got no special deals from Mutual of Omaha, and decided to take their business elsewhere.
Last edited by drawpoker on Wed Aug 08, 2018 9:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.

rbslos36
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by rbslos36 » Wed Aug 08, 2018 9:04 pm

And can you suggest a issue-aged policy? I am unaware of any.
RB

drawpoker
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by drawpoker » Wed Aug 08, 2018 9:10 pm

Post what state you are in, and we will try and help.

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dodecahedron
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by dodecahedron » Wed Aug 08, 2018 9:42 pm

rbslos36 wrote:
Wed Aug 08, 2018 9:04 pm
And can you suggest a issue-aged policy? I am unaware of any.
RB
drawpoker wrote:
Wed Aug 08, 2018 9:10 pm
Post what state you are in, and we will try and help.
This is a really important point. In NY, for example, there are no issue-age policies and no attained-age policies whatsoever. All Medicare Supplement policies in NY are community-rated. (For that matter, the same is true of all ACA Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum policies in NY. State insurance regulations dictate that premiums for medical insurance are not permitted to depend on the age of the insured in NY.)

So just because a given company offers an issue-age policy in state X does not mean that the company will do so in state Y.

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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by drawpoker » Wed Aug 08, 2018 9:49 pm

Exactly.

Which is why I posted that the OP needs to furnish more info for us to help him out.

Also, to muddy matters even further, some states who do publish online the current Medicare supplement premium rates for all companies licensed in that state do not break down the info on each company, i.e., how policies are rated.

My state, Maryland, does so, so I have become somewhat spoiled in respect to having those specifics readily available.

And, yes, I believe you and I have corresponded in the past re: The Empire State is one of the real Medicare hell-holes because of that vexing, universal community rating. :twisted:
(For anyone who needs a primer on this - Community rated Medicare supplement insurance policies mean: Basically, a healthy 65 year old pays exactly the same rate as a frail, sickly 85-year old who has One Foot In The Grave, for the very same Medigap policy :shock: :

And, most important, don't believe what you read on an internet message board from anonymous people. Like me :shock:

Do your own research! And take your time, be thorough!

Can't emphasize that enough, but, duh, also just said don't listen to me.. .so, ... :oops:

rbslos36
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by rbslos36 » Thu Aug 09, 2018 6:10 am

I live in KY.
RB

SoDakJeff
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by SoDakJeff » Thu Aug 09, 2018 7:52 am

drawpoker wrote:
Wed Aug 08, 2018 9:10 pm
Post what state you are in, and we will try and help.
I'm in SD, and thinking about a G plan when I become eligible in Feb. 2019. There are currently 18 companies offering Medigap Policy G in my area, and 17 of those are Attained-Age. The only one that isn't is from Physicians Mutual, which is Issue-Age. I hoping to see about a quote later today, but wondering if anyone has experience with this company?

rbslos36
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by rbslos36 » Thu Aug 09, 2018 8:54 am

I actually do with their Long Term Care policy. I've had one price increase of 10% in 15 years.

RB

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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by drawpoker » Thu Aug 09, 2018 12:15 pm

rbslos36 wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 6:10 am
I live in KY.
Okay, I give your state a D-. No, I think it deserves a Big F grade. Apparently, they do not maintain a residents guide to current Medicare supplement premiums. They just give the list of companies licensed to sell Medigap in Kentucky.

(You probably have already got this from your state insurance website, but here's the link for others)

Amazingly, there are a total of 61 companies. That's a lot. Even some of the big states don't have nearly that many in the marketplace.

http://insurance.ky.gov/Documents/MSCoM ... 071017.pdf

Since your state won't oblige its taxpayers with the information they deserve- and other states freely give out - You have a lot of work ahead. Calling or emailing all 61 to ask about rating method is going to be quite daunting. You could contact a broker, but there is a possibility you may not get complete info. He/she cannot represent all 61 on the list, so he/she is going to try and steer you to the ones who pay him/her the Largest Sales Commission. Same thing with these enticing online ads for "compare Medicare supplement prices in Kentucky". They are put up by insurance brokers, and won't offer a comprehensive list of all 61.

You could bypass the insurance brokers and go directly to your local S.H.I.P. office. But, if you have been reading other threads here, you know the S.H.I.P. people can be very poorly informed, and sometimes either can't answer questions, or, worse, give out bad information.

With such a large group I have a hunch you will find one or more companies using issue-age. It is just going to require a lot of work to hunt them down.

(The one here in MD doing so is not on the KY list, so can't help you there)

Good luck!

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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by drawpoker » Thu Aug 09, 2018 12:58 pm

Okay, Eureka, I have Found It.

LCBA on the list uses issue-age and Plan G at open enrollment rate is currently $126.59 in Kentucky. Altho it is a Christian benevolent assoc. there is no membership fee to join. You become a member when you purchase insurance.

Here is the contact info for follow-up. (They didn't ask if you smoke so I assume they don't rate tobacco and non-tobacco users. I also asked for a quote for a 65 yr old male so I hope you are the masculine type)

Kaitlyne Mannong phone 814-453-4331 Ex. 259 email manningk@lcbalife.org

(I will send you my bill for services under separate cover :P :P :P :P :P )

Edit:
Apparently I have a new BFF at this insurance co. She just emailed me back to say that they only count tobacco use if you are not going in under Open Enrollment or Guaranteed Issue rates.
Last edited by drawpoker on Thu Aug 09, 2018 2:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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CWRadio
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by CWRadio » Thu Aug 09, 2018 1:21 pm

Try playing with this web site for pricing:
https://www.freemedicarereport.com/
Use Just review results.

Paul

drawpoker
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by drawpoker » Thu Aug 09, 2018 1:54 pm

Yeah, but apparently I "played" with it too much.

After running searches on Plan F and Plan G as a 65-yr non-smoking female for my ZIP, I then tried to run HD-F

This message came up:

"Your free Medicare price report limit has been reached. Call 800-xxx-yyyy to speak to a licensed Medicare specialist agent"

So I closed, went back, but using the same ZIP code, they booted me again.

:shock: Screw that :!:

Also, that site does not provide any info on company rating methods for Medigap policies.

MtnBiker
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by MtnBiker » Thu Aug 09, 2018 7:35 pm

drawpoker wrote:
Wed Aug 01, 2018 1:30 pm
Eureka wrote:
Wed Aug 01, 2018 3:10 am
A good agent who sells plans from multiple companies can tell you the least expensive company for each letter of plan and the average premium increases for the past few years. He or she can also give you the current premiums for people of other ages.
A "good agent", as you say, is also paid by commission. And, the commission rates vary a good deal among the Medigap insurers. Why put your trust in an unknown when you can do the very same research yourself on all companies?
In this case I tend to agree with Eureka. I spent a great deal of time (many hours/days over a period of weeks) doing research on my own. Everyone should do some research before selecting a plan letter (F, G, N, etc.) and should understand the differences between issue-age, attained-age, etc. For me, the task of finding current rate information in my state (Idaho) was the most difficult part of the process and calling many individual companies for information was frustrating and time consuming. I reached a preliminary conclusion as to which way to go and then decided to contact a nationwide insurance broker for a second opinion. The insurance agent was able to promptly give me a comparative listing of the lowest price plans in my area, including a few other options that I had not found in my own research. Evidently all plans in my state are issue-age rated, so that factor did not enter the decision. There was no sales pressure. I ultimately selected the Medigap supplier that I had found on my own, but could have reached the same conclusion with less effort if I had consulted with the insurance agent earlier. So I would say that if current comparative rate information for your area is not readily available online, a call to a good agent can be helpful to provide the rate information which is needed as part of your own due diligence. The particular agent that I used can be found at https://seniorsavingsnetwork.org/.

EDIT: Correction: Most (not all) plans in Idaho are issue-age rated.
Last edited by MtnBiker on Fri Aug 10, 2018 3:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Eureka
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by Eureka » Thu Aug 09, 2018 8:03 pm

MtnBiker wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 7:35 pm
drawpoker wrote:
Wed Aug 01, 2018 1:30 pm
Eureka wrote:
Wed Aug 01, 2018 3:10 am
A good agent who sells plans from multiple companies can tell you the least expensive company for each letter of plan and the average premium increases for the past few years. He or she can also give you the current premiums for people of other ages.
A "good agent", as you say, is also paid by commission. And, the commission rates vary a good deal among the Medigap insurers. Why put your trust in an unknown when you can do the very same research yourself on all companies?
In this case I tend to agree with Eureka. I spent a great deal of time (many hours/days over a period of weeks) doing research on my own. Everyone should do some research before selecting a plan letter (F, G, N, etc.) and should understand the differences between issue-age, attained-age, etc. For me, the task of finding current rate information in my state (Idaho) was the most difficult part of the process and calling many individual companies for information was frustrating and time consuming. I reached a preliminary conclusion as to which way to go and then decided to contact a nationwide insurance broker for a second opinion. The insurance agent was able to promptly give me a comparative listing of the lowest price plans in my area, including a few other options that I had not found in my own research. Evidently all plans in my state are issue-age rated, so that factor did not enter the decision. There was no sales pressure. I ultimately selected the Medigap supplier that I had found on my own, but could have reached the same conclusion with less effort if I had consulted with the insurance agent earlier. So I would say that if current comparative rate information for your area is not readily available online, a call to a good agent can be helpful to provide the rate information which is needed as part of your own due diligence. The particular agent that I used can be found at https://seniorsavingsnetwork.org/.
My boss once told me, in explaining why I might not be the best person to succeed him, that I was a "maximizer," not an "optimizer." He was right. When researching Medicare supplements as I approached age 65, I wanted to achieve perfect knowledge of all plans available to me. My state, like most, does not allow switching plans without medical underwriting except in very limited circumstances, so my choice had the potential to be permanent.

I found that perfect knowledge is impossible to obtain. The official federal Medicare Plan Finder didn't even list the company I eventually ended up with. The Illinois SHIP site did, but it didn't have information about historical rate increases. In the end, after reading a book and dozens of online articles, I found that an agent added knowledge I simply could not find on my own. Ultimately, as with choosing to buy from any vendor of products, you need to weigh reputation and even your "gut feeling" about them. The more you know from other sources, the better you will feel about your decision. But there is no perfect source of information.

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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by dm200 » Thu Aug 09, 2018 8:36 pm

I found that perfect knowledge is impossible to obtain.
Yes - both for supplements and Advantage Plans.

Many challenges - one is that when trying to search online, you usually need to give them your information - and then are bombarded with sales "contacts:.

In addition, certainly for Advantage plans - the actual plan documents may not fully describe how, in practice, things actually work.

Just ONE example for my Kaiser Medicare plan : If you read the plan documents, it would appear that you would need to be referred to a Specialist for any and every Specialist visit. In practice, however, that is nothing like how it actually works. Once you get a referral to a Specialist - you do not need another referral to that specialist for whatever the specialist requests that you do. For example, I need to regularly see an Endocrinologist. I got one referral seven years ago - and that is the only referral I have needed. Same with Ophthalmologist. For some referrals, I need to see my PCP, but for several others - I got the referral by email.

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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by drawpoker » Thu Aug 09, 2018 10:55 pm

MtnBiker wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 7:35 pm

..... Everyone should do some research before selecting a plan letter (F, G, N, etc.) .... should understand the differences between issue-age, attained-age, etc..... finding current rate information in my state (Idaho) was the most difficult part of the process.......... Evidently all plans in my state are issue-age rated........
Wow. Pretty good luck of the draw for you.
Is that still valid? Could not find anything at all on your Idaho Dept of Insurance website to verify that, just this link from a broker's website from a reference five years ago

"Four states (Arizona, Florida, Georgia, and Idaho) require issue-age rating (carriers would also have the option to use community rating instead)...."

Am not getting this - they say "require" but in the next breath - say something completely different. :?: :?:

https://www.medicareresources.org/states/

drawpoker
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by drawpoker » Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:06 pm

dm200 wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 8:36 pm
I found that perfect knowledge is impossible to obtain.
Yes - both for supplements and Advantage Plans.....certainly for Advantage plans - the actual plan documents may not fully describe how, in practice, things actually work. ...Just ONE example for my Kaiser Medicare plan : If you read the plan documents, it would appear that you .... In practice, however, that is nothing like how it actually works. Once you get a referral to a Specialist - you do not need another referral to that specialist for whatever the specialist requests that you do. For example, I need to regularly see an Endocrinologist. I got one referral seven years ago - and that is the only referral I have needed. Same with Ophthalmologist. For some referrals, I need to see my PCP, but for several others - I got the referral by email.
Terrific.
We are all very happy for you But - please do not continue to hijack this thread any further with more Kaiser Medicare Advantage Plan anecdotal posts.
"Plan documents" as you delved into at great length have zero relevance here. With respect to "Medicare Supplement Companies", the subject here. All Medicare Supplement Plans are standardized by law. There are no variations. No surprises to be found within "the actual plan" documents you speak of. None.

So why are you bringing up something completely unrelated to Medicare Supplements? Which just might serve to confuse people even more?
Wouldn't It be appropriate just to Start a New thread? Title it with something eye-catching - re: MA Kaiser - "Plans pleasant surprises Found"
The OP has clearly stated more than once he is only interested in Medigap Plan G. We are trying to keep discussion focused on that to help him, and, others who are struggling with the challenges associated with this.

Thanks, really appreciate your understanding & cooperation :)

drawpoker
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by drawpoker » Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:45 am

Eureka wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 8:03 pm
My state, like most, does not allow switching plans without medical underwriting except in very limited circumstances, so my choice had the potential to be permanent...found that perfect knowledge is impossible to obtain. The official federal Medicare Plan Finder didn't even list the company I eventually ended up with...... after reading a book and dozens of online articles, I found that an agent added knowledge I simply could not find on my own......
No argument with that. Especially for folks who live within states with insurance departments that are woefully deficient in posting online comprehensive info for Medicare Supplement prices. Shame on them.

As far as using brokers, nothing wrong with that. As long as you go into it with your eyes wide open. Understanding that they are working on commission. Unless this person is also a family member or close friend of many years standing, it may be difficult to determine if their advice is really in your best interests.

(Not trying to bash insurance brokers. Just stating the facts of life)

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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by Wilderness Librarian » Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:56 pm

drawpoker wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 10:55 pm
MtnBiker wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 7:35 pm

..... Everyone should do some research before selecting a plan letter (F, G, N, etc.) .... should understand the differences between issue-age, attained-age, etc..... finding current rate information in my state (Idaho) was the most difficult part of the process.......... Evidently all plans in my state are issue-age rated........
Wow. Pretty good luck of the draw for you.
Is that still valid? Could not find anything at all on your Idaho Dept of Insurance website to verify that, just this link from a broker's website from a reference five years ago

"Four states (Arizona, Florida, Georgia, and Idaho) require issue-age rating (carriers would also have the option to use community rating instead)...."

Am not getting this - they say "require" but in the next breath - say something completely different. :?: :?:

https://www.medicareresources.org/states/
I am from Idaho too. I went through this August last year. Also decided on Plan G and went looking for companies. From the medicare.gov site got companies servicing my zip code. One was Equitable (based in Salt Lake). I contacted them for price & issue age question. They sent me a listing (not sure derived from where) of all the companies not only themselves, the price for G & an overall industry rating of some kind for the company (sorry but I destroyed the paperwork so this is what I remember). This said Equitable Insur. company was under review but did not say what this meant. So I was concerned about the stability of the company in this market (maybe unjustly so). Otherwise I would have gone with them as they were relatively cheap. But as stated in my previous post I went with Mutual of Omaha (they had high rating on this sheet & no complaints with state insur. commission). I now note above posting saying MofO out of favor with single people (I am single) Not saying I regret decision but I would have taken it under consideration had I realized this point. I would still be concerned with going too cheap if company has problems or minor company simply decides to pull out of a low population state like Idaho.

As to Idaho requiring issue age: that surprises me but may be the case I don't remember what Equitable spreadsheet said and I don't remember anything like that on State insur. website. Avoiding political commentary but I would expect Idaho to have a weak Insurance Commission which is one reason I proceeded with the caution I did. Maybe I misjudged this.

drawpoker
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by drawpoker » Fri Aug 10, 2018 1:11 pm

Good points.

Understand your caution about dealing with an insurance company that might be shaky. For life, auto, LTC, for sure.
But, remember, with Medicare supplements, if the company goes belly-up or pulls out of the market, you fall under federal (not state) protection of the law re Guaranteed Issue.

Mutual Of Omaha was not doing the married couple discount four & half years ago when I started researching Medigap. I saw it advertised in a mailing from them a year or so ago. (They still hound me, at least 3 or 4 times a year, to buy insurance) But I saw a lot of grumbling about it from singles on other Medicare internet message boards. Regarding it was rather discriminatory in favoring married couples over singles.

Also, it just pissed some people off (like me) As it is just a rather thinly disguised ploy to fool more senior citizens into thinking Medicare coverage could be "joint". In the same sense as couples are able to file joint tax returns.

I know well of what you speak about state insurance commissioners. Some people are lucky enough to live in a state which is regarded as "consumer friendly" with insurance.

Others find themselves living where the state Insurance Commissioner is pretty much in the pocket of the insurance companies.

MtnBiker
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by MtnBiker » Fri Aug 10, 2018 2:59 pm

drawpoker wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 10:55 pm
MtnBiker wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 7:35 pm

..... Everyone should do some research before selecting a plan letter (F, G, N, etc.) .... should understand the differences between issue-age, attained-age, etc..... finding current rate information in my state (Idaho) was the most difficult part of the process.......... Evidently all plans in my state are issue-age rated........
Wow. Pretty good luck of the draw for you.
Is that still valid? Could not find anything at all on your Idaho Dept of Insurance website to verify that, just this link from a broker's website from a reference five years ago

"Four states (Arizona, Florida, Georgia, and Idaho) require issue-age rating (carriers would also have the option to use community rating instead)...."

Am not getting this - they say "require" but in the next breath - say something completely different. :?: :?:

https://www.medicareresources.org/states/
Well I was going on memory, so was probably wrong - there may be a few exceptions (AARP/UnitedHealthcare?) that are not issue-age rated in Idaho. For sure, there are a lot of issue-age Plan G policies to choose from. Here is an excerpt from a current Idaho SHIBA brochure:
In Idaho:
§ Medigap providers are required to sell policies to Medicare beneficiaries under age 65.
§ Premium rates for females and males must be the same.
§ There are different rates for smokers and non-smokers.
§ All policies being sold are “issue-age” or “community” rated.
§ Premiums may go up only because of inflation or the pool’s healthcare costs but not because the policyholder gets older.
https://doi.idaho.gov/displaypdf?cat=Sh ... rs%20Guide

MtnBiker
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Re: Medicare Supplement Companies

Post by MtnBiker » Fri Aug 10, 2018 3:43 pm

drawpoker wrote:
Fri Aug 10, 2018 1:11 pm
Understand your caution about dealing with an insurance company that might be shaky. For life, auto, LTC, for sure.
But, remember, with Medicare supplements, if the company goes belly-up or pulls out of the market, you fall under federal (not state) protection of the law re Guaranteed Issue.
When looking at insurance companies for Medigap, I wasn't concerned about their financial stability. However, I rejected the lowest cost Plan G which was for a relatively unknown company that had just entered the state. Instead I selected a well-known company (Aetna) with the second lowest rate (after 5% household discount), but with a long history of relatively stable, low rates. My concern was that the "new" provider may have started off with a "teaser rate" to gain initial subscribers in my state, and then would increase prices later. I don't know if that is a legitimate concern or not.

The Aetna rate increase was 7% at the one year renewal date. My hope is that future increases will not be quite that high.

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