Medigap Changes: How It Will Affect You

Doctor holding record

When you are looking for companies that are selling Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap), it is best to understand the type of plan that you need apart from checking the provider’s reputation. The Medigap agent’s assistance is fundamental, but your choice should also take into account the changes happening with Medigap.

When 2020 arrives, Medigap will no longer offer Plan C or F. The US Congress declared that new Medigap plans will not cover deductibles after January 2020. But these changes will not affect certain beneficiaries; however, it would be best to ask your insurance provider if the Plan suits you.

Useful Complement to Medicare

Medigap serves as a very important addition to your Original Medicare. It helps you cover costs like copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles. Medicare can cover you through its hospital and medical insurance (or through Medicare Advantage) which is offered through a  Medicare-approved insurance firm.

Medigap offers ten plan types. These standardized plans cover Medicare’s hospital coinsurance fully. But when it comes to medical coinsurance, the plans differ. Some plans would cover 100 percent of costs, but Plan K only covers 50 percent, and Plan L covers only 75 percent. Some states like Massachusetts, Minnesota, and Wisconsin also offer varying plans.

Adjusting to Changes in Medigap

insurance signing
While Medicare remains tied to congressional deliberations, Medigap is affected by the demand for Medicare (hence, indirectly affected by legislation too) and the general market for health insurance. But there are changes in the air, including Plan F.

Plan F will no longer be available by year’s end. The most popular Medigap choice, Plan F is made for those who want to avoid the variabilities in healthcare costs. Many people often choose Plan D, but the reason for the shutdown is that the government wants to control costs, particularly for new Medicare enrollees who may expectedly join the Plan F bandwagon.

But those who are under Plan F need not worry. When Plan F is shut down by the end of the year, however, they will still be able to benefit from the plan. Those who turn 65 by 2020 will also not be able to buy Plan F anymore.

The other nine plan types will still be vailable, with the most probable demand shift going to Plan G, since it works relatively the same way as Plan F. You could have more time assessing if Plan G is a better alternative before the government shuts down Plan F.

But buying a new plan may also be as difficult as switching to a new one. Switching from another Medigap plan or even from Medicare Advantage will be hard in 2020 as many insurance companies now, as per state regulation, will be tougher in screening medical conditions.

Medigap has always been an answer to many of Medicare’s imperfections. But as in the case of overbuying insurance plans,  changes have to be made to curb rising costs. Picking the right plan early while considering your objectives is the best way to avoid potential impacts of market swings.