These days, medical insurance is crucial to maintain good health.
None the less, many of us don’t consider having health insurance a priority until we get sick and realize it’s not easy to access health care without insurance coverage.
Unfortunately, it’s also challenging to get insurance if you’re already ill. Given this, it’s best to plan ahead, but then, the world of insurance plans is complex and can be difficult to navigate.
To demystify one form of insurance, let’s explore what Medicare Supplement Plan C is all about by looking at its benefits, costs, and availability.
Benefits of Medicare Supplement Plan C
Medicare Supplemental Plan C offers a variety of benefits to those who go for this policy, which include:
- Covers all the costs that are not covered by Medicare—the out-of-pocket costs such as deductions or co-payments.
- Coinsurance and hospital costs for a year after the Medicare benefits have run out.
- Treats Part B as coinsurance or co-payment.
- Covers the first three pints of blood required by a patient under the coverage.
- Facilitates the provision of Part A hospice care as coinsurance or co-payment.
- Enables the use of a skilled nursing facility care as coinsurance.
- Treats Part A and B as a deductible.
- Provides the opportunity to take care for up to 80 percent of your healthcare costs when traveling abroad (subject to the plan limits)
One of the most common questions individuals considering health care insurance ask is: what does it cost?
When it comes to a Medicare Supplemental Plan, one shouldn’t shy away from it because of questions of cost, but that said, Medigap Plan C is one of the costly ones.
The question of it being costly is answered by the fact that it’s a comprehensive health supplemental insurance plan that provides many benefits as highlighted.
Sticking to the original Medicare program can leave many with concerns as far as how they are going to take care of the 20 percent out-of-pocket cost of their care, which depending on the individual’s health, could become quite costly.
Something like heart bypass surgery or chemotherapy can quickly run over a hundred thousand dollars.
The cost for this Medigap plan is covered by monthly premium payments, which will be determined depending on where you stay, your preferred carrier, your plan’s rate structure, and many other factors such as your age and gender among others.
The actual cost is an average premium of $150 per month – which will vary depending on the said factors, thus could be less than this average or more.
It’s important to note that, the benefits will not change depending on the carrier you opt for since the differences arise with the premium charged by the carrier.
Medicare Supplemental Plan C can only be accessed through specific criteria. For starters, it’s available to individuals who are enrolled in Medicare Part B.
Though, it is easier to qualify if you join during the six-month open enrolment period. This period comes into effect the moment you enroll for Medicare Part B.
The importance of this period is emphasized as once you enroll, you automatically qualify for a Plan C policy. However, even in the case that the enrolment period has passed, you are still eligible.
You just have to fill in more questions during the application process. Likewise, applications are not rejected or subjected to higher payments because of pre-existing conditions.
Despite the above, anyone can enroll for the Medicare Supplemental Plan C, however, in the case that you are disabled and below the age of 65, the availability of this plan will depend on your state.
This plan is going to be discontinued by January 2020. Applications will remain open until that point, and all those enrolled before then will be grandfathered in, meaning they get to keep their plan so long as it remains paid and current.
This change is not a reflection of Plan C. It isn’t inadequate coverage. Congress forced the closing of Plan C, along with a few others, as some felt they were encouraging the overuse of Medicare services.
Medigap Plan C Alternatives
Plan B – One of the less complete plans, Medicare supplement plan B is a very affordable option.
Plan F – The most used plan across the country, Medigap Plan F coverage leaves no gaps that need to be covered out of pocket.
Plan N – One of the few plans to lower costs with copays, Medigap Plan N cuts costs for seniors by offering almost complete coverage.
What is a Medicare supplement?
Medicare is a government healthcare program for those over 65 or with permeant disabilities. However, even though Medicare is a government program, unfortunately, it doesn’t cover all the costs that pertain to your bills.
To address this problem, private insurance companies offer supplemental Medicare plans that fill the gap in coverage. These supplemental plans work simultaneously with Medicare to ensure their legitimacy and validity.
They are standardized by the government. There are ten supplemental programs ranging from A to N—Medicare Supplemental Plan C is just one among them. Plan C is said to be better when compared to Medicare Supplemental Plan A and B.
So, in what way is it better? For starters, Plan C allows you to have Part A hospital coinsurance for another year which becomes handy when you have to cover costs for an extra night.
Given that, Plan C proves to be quite the bargain and manifests other benefits as well (we’ll get to those in a moment). However, despite its attractiveness, it does have some slight limitations too.
Most of the time, Medicare Supplemental Plan C is used interchangeably with the term Medigap Plan C, since they are the same. Medigap Plan C is also often confused with Medicare Part C.
The former implies a supplemental insurance plan offered by Medicare itself, while the latter refers to private health insurance. It’s a bit confusing, mainly because the names are similar.
In short, though, if a private company is offering the plan, it’s Medigap Plan C. If the plan is through the government, it’s Medicare Part C.
Medicare Plan C Bottom Line
Plan C is one of the three most comprehensive plans available and a popular choice for Medicare recipients. If you can get this plan for a great price it will provide an easy framework for know exactly how much your health insurance costs will be.