Medicare Supplemental Plan A and Medicare Part A are entirely different. Yet Medicare Supplement and Medigap are the same.
Original Medicare Part A is for the hospital portion, but the Medicare Supplement Plan A is a supplemental policy.
While Medicare will pay for most medical expenses, it will not pay for all your medical services and the medical supplies, which leaves a gap in your insurance coverage which is why supplemental coverage was created.
Medicare Supplemental Insurance Plan A
Private insurance companies sell this plan to cover some of your out-of-pocket costs not covered by Medicare which all beneficiaries pay.
While this will not cover your Medicare Part B premiums, this coverage will help you with coinsurance, deductibles, and co-payments.
All supplement policies must follow specific federal and state guidelines to help protect Medicare recipients. Carriers may only sell standardized coverage and meet the basic standards no matter which private insurance company offers the coverage.
While federal and state laws mandate the essential services, some plans will provide additional benefits, allowing Medicare beneficiaries to choose the best plan to meet their specific needs.
Medicare Supplemental Plan A Coverage
Out of the ten plans available for 2023, the Medicare supplemental Plan A has the least benefits. Like other plans, Plan A Medicare Supplemental insurance does not offer you drug coverage. Instead, you will have to sign up for a separate Medicare Prescription Drug plan, a stand-alone drug plan.
The stand-alone drug plan must work in conjunction with your Plan A, or you can also join a Medicare Advantage plan which is different from a supplemental plan.
Medicare Supplemental Plan A Benefits Eligibility & Enrollment
Eligibility for a Medicare Supplemental Plan generally requires an individual must have the traditional Medicare coverage. Therefore, the best time to purchase your policy is during the OEP (Open Enrollment Period). Medigap OEP dates will begin the 1st day of the month you turn 65 or older. You must also be enrolled in Medicare Part B.
This is the period in which carriers cannot refuse to sell an individual a policy for any preexisting health conditions or charge additional fees for any health conditions a person might have when joining the plan.
Married couples must each have their insurance policies since a single plan will not cover both individuals. In addition, Medicare supplemental Plan A availability will depend on which state you live in.
Prices for Medicare Supplemental Plan A
Plan A has the least amount of coverage and is the lowest-cost Medicare Supplement insurance requiring a monthly premium payment each month.
Premiums vary depending on which carrier you choose. Several different carriers offer plans in each state, so it’s essential to compare the different plans to find which will be the best for your specific needs. Use the chart below to compare Medigap Plan A to the other options available.
|Medigap Benefits||Medigap Plans|
|Part A coinsurance and hospital costs up to an additional 365 days after Medicare benefits are used up||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Part B coinsurance or copayment||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||50%||75%||Yes||Yes***|
|Blood (first 3 pints)||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||50%||75%||Yes||Yes|
|Part A hospice care coinsurance or copayment||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||50%||75%||Yes||Yes|
|Skilled nursing facility care coinsurance||No||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||50%||75%||Yes||Yes|
|Part A deductible||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||50%||75%||50%||Yes|
|Part B deductible||No||No||Yes||No||Yes||No||No||No||No||No|
|Part B excess charge||No||No||No||No||Yes||Yes||No||No||No||No|
|Foreign travel exchange (up to plan limits)||No||No||80%||80%||80%||80%||No||No||80%||80%|
|Out-of-pocket limit**||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||$6,940 in 2023||$3,470 in 2023||N/A||N/A|