Medicare Supplement plans (also known as Medigap plans) are offered by private insurance companies and can help you pay for certain out-of-pocket costs not covered under Original Medicare. These out-of-pocket costs can include Medicare deductibles, coinsurance, and hospital or skilled nursing facility costs after you’ve used up your Medicare coverage.

Medicare Supplement plans are only available to people who already have Medicare Part A, which helps pay for hospital services, and Part B, which helps pay for medical services. Medicare Supplement coverage only works alongside Original Medicare and can’t be used to pay for Medicare Advantage plan costs.

Do you have a fairly frequent doctor or hospital visits? If so, you may already know that Medicare Part A and Part B come with out-of-pocket costs you have to pay. You might be able to save money with a Medicare Supplement insurance plan. Medicare Supplement, or Medigap, insurance plans fill in “gaps” in basic benefits left behind by Original Medicare, Part A and Part B, such as deductibles, coinsurance, and copayments.

Best Medicare Supplement Plans 2020In 47 states, there are 10 standardized Medicare Supplement insurance plans that are denoted by the letters A through N (plans E, H, I, and J are no longer sold). The private insurance companies offering these plans do not have to offer every Medicare Supplement plan, but they must offer at least Plan A. If an insurance company chooses to offer any Medicare Supplement insurance plans in addition to Plan A, it must offer either Plan C or Plan F along with any other standardized Medicare Supplement insurance plans it offers.

What You Can Get from a Medical Supplement Plan?

All Medicare supplement plans provide these basic benefits:

  • Part A coinsurance and hospital costs (up to an additional 365 days after Medicare benefits are used)
  • Medicare Part B coinsurance or copayment
  • Cost of blood transfusions (first 3 pints)
  • Part A hospice/respite care coinsurance or copayment

Some plans may also provide additional benefits including:

  • Skilled nursing facility coinsurance or copayment
  • Part A deductible ($1340 in 2018)
  • Part B deductible ($183 in 2018)
  • Part B Excess Charges1
  • Foreign travel emergency (up to plan limits)

Make a Comparison of Medicare Supplement Plan To Get The Right One

As mentioned, the same standardized benefits are offered in most states. The chart below lists the benefit features for the Medicare Supplement plans offered in 47 states, excluding Massachusetts, Minnesota, and Wisconsin. Benefits marked with an “X” are 100% covered by the plan. Otherwise, the benefit is covered at the percentage listed.

Medicare Supplement Benefits

 

A B C D F G K L M N
Medicare Part A coinsurance and hospital costs up to an additional
365 days after Medicare benefits are exhausted

 

X X X X X X X X X X
Medicare Part B copayment or coinsurance

 

X X X X X X 50%

 

75%

 

X X***
First three pints of blood

 

X X X X X X 50%

 

75%

 

X X
Medicare Part A hospice care coinsurance or copayment

 

X X X X X X 50%

 

75%

 

X X
Skilled nursing facility (SNF) care coinsurance

 

X X X X X X 50%

 

75%

 

X X
Medicare Part A deductible

 

X X X X X X 50%

 

75%

 

X X
Medicare Part B deductible

 

    X   X    

 

 

 

   
Medicare Part B ‘excess charges’

 

        X X

 

       

 

Foreign travel emergency coverage (up to plan limits)

 

    80%

 

80%

 

80%

 

80%

 

    80%

 

80%

 

Medicare Part B preventive care coinsurance

 

X X X X X X X X X

 

X

 

              Out-of-pocket limits apply**