A lot of older adults stick with Original Medicare or a Medicare Advantage plan. However, depending on your personal circumstances and medical needs, these plans may not be enough to give you adequate healthcare coverage. Fortunately, Medigap offers a way to “fill in the gaps.” Though Medigap plans are optional, every Medicare beneficiary should consider the benefits and costs of a Medigap plan to see if it could be the right fit for them.

What is Medigap?

Medigap is simply another name for a Medicare Supplement plan. Supplemental Medicare insurance offers extra coverage to supplement an Original Medicare plan. It’s important to note that you cannot combine a Medigap plan with Medicare Advantage. So, a typical Medicare beneficiary might have Medicare Part A for inpatient services, Medicare Part B for outpatient services, Medicare Part D for prescription drug coverage, and Medigap to pay for some of your out-of-pocket expenses.

What Does Medigap Pay For?

The three most common expenses that Medigap helps pay for are deductibles, copayments, and coinsurances. This can greatly reduce your out-of-pocket expenses from your Original Medicare plan. Additionally, Medigap can cover medical expenses you incur while traveling outside of the United States.

Who Is Eligible for Medigap and How Can I Enroll?

To be eligible for Medigap, you must first enroll in Original Medicare. In other words, you must be 65 years or older, eligible for Medicare, and enrolled in Medicare (Part A and B). Once you’ve enrolled in Medicare, you can begin shopping for a Medigap plan.

Medigap is a private supplemental health insurance policy which means that you can choose the plan and provider that you want. It makes the most sense to sign up for Medigap during your Open Enrollment Period (as this will likely save you money on your monthly premiums). To learn more about enrolling in Medigap, you can contact one of Time for 65’s licensed agents today.

How Much Does Medigap Cost?

The cost of Medigap varies. Your provider, your location, and the type of plan you choose can all affect your monthly premium. That said, the average cost of a Medigap plan falls somewhere between $140-$150 per month. This comes out to roughly $1700-$1800 per year.

Can I Change My Medigap Policy During the Open Enrollment Period?

Fortunately, you can acquire a new Medigap policy or switch to a new Medigap policy at any time. You don’t have to switch during your Open Enrollment Period or during any special annual enrollment periods. It is recommended that the best time to sign up for your initial Medigap plan is during your Open Enrollment Period, as you can probably secure a lower monthly premium.

The Bottom Line

In short, Medigap is a great way to add extra coverage to Medicare Part A and Part B. Supplemental insurance can help you with many of your out-of-pocket expenses. Additionally, most Medigap plans are affordable and flexible, making it easy to acquire or switch plans at just about any time.

If you’d like to learn more about your Medigap plans or Medicare coverage, feel free to fill out the form or give us a call anytime. Our licensed agents are focused on giving you the information you need, with zero pressure to enroll in a plan.