Most people qualify for Medicare after turning 65. The insurance plans are designed to cater to most but not all healthcare expenses. An original Medicare plan has Part A and Part B. The first part covers inpatient costs while the second caters to outpatient expenses. When you go to a hospital, you will be required to pay a deductible out-of-pocket and about 20% for things such as consultation services, ambulance services, and tests.
Generally, an individual is not required to pay a periodic premium for the first part. However, a monthly premium is payable for the second part. As a result, when many people turn 65, they purchase Medicare Supplement plans to cover the extra health care expenses that Medicare doesn’t pay. The following are some of the pros and cons of having a Medicare Supplement plan:
Pros of Medicare Supplement
You Have Multiple Choices
Insurance firms that sell Medicare Supplement policies offer individuals several options to choose from. Therefore, one gets choices of prices and coverage. All plans are letters, and Medicare requires all insurance carriers to offer exactly similar benefits. This means the benefits you will enjoy for plan F from one insurance company are similar to those of plan F from another one. This makes it easy for policyholders to make informed choices.
Plan F Pays 100% of Out-of-Pocket Costs
It is the richest of all Medicare Supplement plans. With this package, you will not be required to pay any out-pocket expenses as long as Medicare approves the benefits. This means that if you need to pay consultation charges or tests, the insurance plan will pay 100% of these healthcare costs. You will not need to think about copays and deductibles of Medicare-approved services.
You Have More Option When Choosing Doctors
You will have the freedom to choose any medical professional, provided they accept Medicare. If you have a Medicare Supplement policy, you will not need to worry about “gatekeeper” and HMO network guidelines. When comparing the available plans, your ability to see a doctor that accepts Medicare is crucial.
Cons of Medicare Supplement
You Must Pay Premiums
If you opt for Medicare Supplement insurance, you will be required to monthly premiums to continue enjoying the benefits. The amounts payable will vary from one plan to another, depending on the benefits offered. The average premium is $152.
Dental and Vision Are Excluded
Usually, individuals must pay for their dental and vision medical bills. If you would like a plan that caters to such costs, some insurance firms will require you to pay additional premiums. In most cases, many insurers don’t mention dental and vision when selling their policies.
Limited Access to Medical Experts
You may have limited choices when looking for doctors. The insurance plans only allow people to see a doctor who accepts original Medicare. Even if a medical professional accepts a patient with Medicare Supplement, they cannot charge more than what the plan reimburses.
They must accept the rates offered by Medicare for the services they offer. Usually, such rates are lower than their standard charges. Therefore, with a Medicare Supplement, you may have a hard time trying to book an appointment with medical professionals.
Changing Plans May Take Some Time
Before you switch the plans, an insurer may require you to answer and pass some questions. For you to get a Medicare Supplement, you must answer multiple health questions or turn 65. These questions are strict, and the insurer may deny the benefits if you have a negative medical history.