Every year there are a countless number of seniors that are shocked to see expensive hospital bills arrive in the mail. Many of them think that Medicare is going to pay all or a large portion of their expenses. The problem is there are tons of expenses that Medicare doesn’t pay for, and a majority of enrollees don’t realize it until it’s too late and they are forced to pick up their hospital bills themselves. The best way to protect yourself from draining your bank account to stay healthy is to enroll into a Medicare Supplement Plan. If you are interested in Medicare supplemental plans that are available in Georgia or if you’re already covered such as with a Medigap Plan J or simply want to know the purpose of Medicare, we have information for you! If you would like more information about AARP Medicare Supplement rates, we can certainly help with this as well.
Now, lets get to the details of Medicare Supplement Plan N!
Medicare supplement Plan N has become a very popular Medicare supplement plan. It has some unique attributes that make it very appealing. The rest of this article will explore how Medicare plan N works, but if you came looking to get Medigap quotes you can fill out the form on the side of this page or get more information on Medicare supplement quotes from supplemental insurance companies.
Medigap Plan N doesn’t cover as many expenses as some of the other Medigap Plans such as Plan F or Medigap Plan G, but that doesn’t mean you should automatically eliminate it from your supplemental insurance search. While you may have more out-of-pocket expenses, you could benefit from purchasing a Plan N policy versus one of the most all-encompassing plans.
Medicare Supplement Plan N Coverage
Medicare Plan N will fill seven of the nine coverage gaps left by traditional Medicare insurance. This means Medicare part N has slightly worse coverage than plan G and Medicare Supplement Plan F. The only two gaps it does not cover are the Medicare part B deductible of $147 and any excess charges that fall under Medicare Part B above the Medicare approved amount. This means that any time you are admitted to the hospital you will be completely covered and the 20% coinsurance for Medicare part B is completely covered.
What sets Medicare supplement plan N apart from other plans is that it does have copays for some services. If you go for a standard doctor’s visit, then you will have to pay a $20 copay, and if you go to the emergency room and are not admitted as a patient in the hospital then you will have to pay a $50 copay. These provisions Medigap Plan N are designed to keep people from abusing the Medicare Part B system. Neither of these copays are massive expenses, but you should still be aware of the bills you will be getting when you go to the doctor’s office or hospital.
To make all that easier to wrap your head around, the additional coverage you get with Medigap plan N is:
- Medicare Part A Deductible
- Medicare Part A Coinsurance
- Medicare Part B Coinsurance
- Hospice Care Coinsurance or Copayment
- Skilled Nursing Facility Care Coinsurance
- First Three Pints of Blood
Those are all of the expenses you won’t have to pay a dime for, but not everything is covered under this plan. You will have to pay out of pocket for
- Medicare Part B deductible of $147
- Medicare Part B excess charges
- Copayment of $20 for doctor visits and $50 for Emergency room visit without being admitted to the hospital
As you can see, what you will have to pay out of pocket is pretty minimal, but you should realize what you’d be left paying for out-of-pocket. One of the most important gaps left by Plan N is the Medicare Part B excess charges. This is one section that many enrollees don’t understand but can cost thousands of dollars. So what exactly are the excess charges?
With every service that you can get at a doctor, specialist or hospital, Medicare has a pre-determined approved amount based on a national average. According to federal law, the doctor or hospital can charge 15% more than that Medicare-approved amount, which is the Part B excess charges. With the Medigap Plan N, you would be left paying for these fees out-of-pocket.
Depending on your health, these excess charges could only be a couple extra bucks or could be thousands of dollars depending on the severity of the treatment. In some cases, these excess charges will never impact a Medicare participant, while others could be left with several hundreds of dollars to pay for.
Eligibility and Enrollment
Edibility for any Medicare supplement requires that you already be enrolled in both Medicare Part A and Part B. Since these plans are distributed by state you have to live in one of the states that offers plan N (only three states do not). It should be noted that these plans are standardized across the United States, which means that they will be the same no matter which state you buy the plan in. Maybe you are interested in Medicare Supplemental Plans in South Carolina, or have questions about plans in different states. We would love to guide you in this process.
While you can enroll in Plan N at any time if you meet these eligibility requirements, the best time will be when you first start Medicare Part B. You have a six-month window when you enroll in Medicare Part B called open enrollment. During this time, the insurance companies will only take your age into consideration when signing up for a plan. This means there will be no medical underwriting. If you do not enroll during the open enrollment period and have some illness or disability, you may end up with significantly higher rates or could even be rejected for coverage due to underwriting. Signing up during the open enrollment period can save you thousands of dollars in monthly premiums every year. Don’t waste all that extra money just because you wanted too long to purchase your Medigap policy.
One aspect to be aware of when you’re looking to buy a Medigap policy is the pre-existing condition waiting period that some companies can write into your policy. According to federal law, a Medicare Supplemental insurance company can deny you coverage for a pre-existing health condition for up to six months after your purchase the policy. They can only refuse to pay for any expenses related to the health complication; they still have to pay for all other medical expenses like a normal policy. These clauses aren’t commonly known amount Medigap consumers, but they can cause serious financial complication. If you have any pre-existing health complications, be sure to talk to the insurance company before you purchase the policy.
Why Choose Plan N?
With the extra fees you see in Medicare supplement plan N that are not there for Medicare supplement plan F always bring the question, why choose Medigap Plan N? The reason comes down to monthly premiums versus the extra risk you take. As a general rule Medicare Plan N will cost 25% less than Plan F. If your Medicare part N premiums are $30-$40 less per month, then you may decide to go with plan N. If the premiums are only $10 less per month they take the Medicare supplement Plan G or Plan F policy. To put this in perspective lets look at the case of patient X. Patient X goes in for an outpatient procedure at his local doctor’s office. The procedure is approved by Medicare for $1000, but the doctor charges $1100. In this Scenario Patient X would have to pay:
- $147 Medicare Part B deductible
- $100 in excess charges over the Medicare approved amount
If Patient X paid $21 less per month in premiums, then they would break even with plan F and $8.50 less in premiums would break even with plan G. However if Patient X didn’t need a procedure then these numbers would be even better. Overall, if you can get significantly lower premiums, you can save a substantial amount by going with plan N. What matters is having an agent who will do the comparison with you and discover whether Medicare Plan N is the right plan for you.
So, who would benefit from choosing Plan N over Plan F? There are several situations that we think would work well for Plan N. The first if you are healthy and don’t go to the doctors often. Because Plan N doesn’t cover any copayments, if you go to the doctor or hospital often, you will be paying either $20 or $50 frequently, but if you’re healthy, you will be saving that money.
The other scenario is if you have enough money saved up to cover the costs of the gaps left behind by Plan N. Because you’ll be saving money on monthly premiums, if you can handle the costs of any excess charges and the Part B deductible, it may be worth it to save money on monthly premiums, but pay the expenses left behind by the Medigap plan.
A Medicare supplement insurance plan is a great way to avoid the rising costs of health care. With a Medigap policy, you don’t have to dread getting the hospital bills or wondering how you will cover the costs of your treatments or doctor’s visit. So not only will you get incredible health care coverage, but you’ll also have peace of mind knowing you can live out a healthy retirement.
There are a lot of things to consider when looking to buy a Medigap policy. It can be a long process of looking through what each plan does and doesn’t cover. Deciding which Medigap plan fits your needs the best can be a tricky process. There are dozens of different factors that you have to account for. Because you can’t predict the future, there are some aspects that you have to guess on, but you want to make education and well-informed guesses.
The most important factor to consider is your health. Do you have any serious health complications? Do you have a history or a family history of poor or failing health? If you’re in excellent health with few blemishes in your family history, then you could consider taking a gamble on a supplement insurance policy that leaves more holes. It could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars every year in monthly premiums.
The other major factor is your finances, do you have enough money to pay for the high premiums of an all-inclusive Medigap policy? Living on a fixed income as a retiree can pose new challenges for some Medicare enrollees. If one of the more expensive plans would put too much financial strain on your budget, you should consider enrolling into a cheaper plan and saving additional money for health care expenses.
You’ve worked hard to reach this stage of life. You’re probably enjoying your retirement, don’t let the rising costs of healthcare break your retirement nest egg that you’ve been building all these years. Instead of shoveling out thousands and thousands of dollars for a doctor’s visit or for treatments, a Medigap Plan can help you protect your savings and still get the healthcare that you deserve. One of the biggest reasons that Medicare enrollees avoid going to the doctor or hospital is because they can’t afford the bill. Your health should always be your number one priority and money shouldn’t get in the way of that.
Instead of spending hours talking to different agents, let us do the hard work for you. At CompareMedicareSupplements.net we are dedicated to helping you find the best Medicare supplement plan for your needs. So if Medicare supplement plan N or some other plan is the best choice for your budget, then we will make sure that you get that plan. We are here to serve, so if you have any questions about Medicare part N or any other plan or part of your Medicare coverage, please contact us.