What is Medigap?
If you enroll in Traditional Medicare (Parts A, B, or D) you are also able to choose a Medigap plan. Medigap is used to help fill any gaps you might have in your traditional plan coverage.
Medigap policies cover coinsurance only after you’ve paid the deductible (unless the Medigap policy pays the deductible).
The Best Time to Enroll
One detail to note is that it is best to enroll in a Medigap plan during Medigap Open Enrollment which is the first six months from when you turn 65 and have chosen Medicare Part A and B plans. During this six month period you can purchase any Medigap plan, regardless of any existing health issues. If you wait to purchase a Medigap plan after this enrollment period you might have to pay more.
You can still shop Medigap plans this Medicare Open Enrollment period that starts on October 15th 2021 and runs through December 7,2021. Any changes you make to your existing coverage or if you choose a new plan, will take effect on January 1, 2022.
Types of Medigap Plans
There are 12 Medigap plans, lettered A through N. Each plan offers supplemental coverage to help cover the core costs of Part A and B. Other plans provide coverage for out-of-pocket costs like deductibles, copays, and coinsurance.
Some plans are ‘first dollar coverage’ plans meaning there is no deductible and the insurer starts paying as soon as a medical event occurs. Other plans require you to meet the deductible before they begin paying costs.
Basic supplemental plan - every insurance must offer this. All other plans have to offer more than A.
Slightly more coverage than A. Also covers the Part A deductible.
First-dollar coverage - covers everything except excess charges. Excess charges are charges from doctors who don’t accept Medicare and may charge up to 15% more than Medicare allows for care.
Covers all charges except the Part B deductible and excess charges.
Plan F is a first-dollar coverage plan. Under this plan you only pay your premium. This plan is only available to certain beneficiaries.
High Deductible Plan F
Same as Plan F but a low premium is coupled with a high deductible.
G is the most popular Medigap plan and covers everything except the Part B deductible.
High Deductible Plan G
Same as Plan G but has a lower premium coupled with a high deductible.
Covers certain benefits at 50% instead of 100%.
Covers certain benefits at 75% instead of 100%.
Another cost-sharing plan that only covers 50% of the inpatient deductible. Does not cover excess charges or the Part B deductible.
Covers everything except for the Part B deductible and excess charges. This plan comes with small copays.
For a detailed chart and more information on Medigap plans, check out this page from Medicare.gov.