Insurance companies have been offering Medicare supplements (Medigap policies) since Medicare first began in 1966. AARP Medicare supplement insurance underwritten by United Healthcare is a solid choice. Of the plans available Medicare supplement Plan N is getting a lot of attention.
In 2003 the NAIC re-tooled Medicare supplements to create 11 standardized plans. These plans are called Modernized Medicare supplement plans. Two new plans were added; Plans M and N. AARP Medicare supplement Plan N has some features that many Advantage Plan members may find to be of interest.
What makes Plan N unique?
AARP Medicare supplement Plan N is very competitively priced. Many Medicare beneficiaries enroll in a Medicare Advantage Plan because a supplement is financially out of reach. United Healthcare may have solved that problem with Plan N. Priced considerably lower that their most popular plan, supplement Plan F.
United Healthcare is able to offer much lower rates because of the way Plan N is designed. Plan N is the first supplement to include co-pays for doctor visits and emergency room visits. Another cost sharing feature is the beneficiary’s responsibility for the Part B deductible. In addition to the monthly premium, the policy holder may pay:
- The Part B deductible currently $183 for 2017.
- Up to $20 for a doctor visit.
- Up to $50 for an emergency room visit.
Aside from the possible co-pays, once the Part B deductible is met, Medicare supplement plan N pays 100% of Part B co-insurance.
AARP supplement Plan N benefits:
Medicare Part A co-insurance hospital costs up to an additional 365 days after Medicare benefits are used up.
Part B co-insurance or co-payment. Subject to Part B deductible and co-pays detailed above.
Blood (First 3 pints).
Part A hospice care co-insurance or co-payment.
Skilled nursing care co-insurance.
Medicare Part A deductible.
Foreign travel emergency (plan limits apply).
Medicare preventative care Part B co-insurance.
Why not a Medicare Advantage plan?
One thing is certain. Medicare Advantage plans are changing and in many instances, monthly premiums are increasing. Some Advantage plans now cost more than a Medicare supplement. An Advantage plan will certainly require cost sharing for hospital inpatient charges. Most plans require you to pay a couple hundred dollar co-pay, for a fixed number of days, as part of your cost sharing responsibility. You may even be required to pay more than if you had only Medicare. This is not the case with AARP Medicare supplement Plan N.
Many Medicare Advantage plans offer no benefit over Medicare when it comes to outpatient surgery and durable medical equipment. Many outpatient tests require 20% co-insurance and 30% co-insurance when you are out of their network.
Medicare Plan N does not require a network. You can receive services from any provider that accepts Medicare assignment.
When you get down to it, you are paying a lot of extra money to receive the additional benefits that an Advantage plan includes. When you compare Medicare supplement Plan N to an Advantage plan, you will be pleasantly surprised at the value Plan N brings to the table.