Best Medicare Advantage Plans in Minnesota for 2020
If you are shopping for the best Medicare Advantage plans in Minnesota for 2020, then there is a good chance that you have recently enrolled in Medicare Part A and Medicare Part B or that you will be eligible for Medicare sometime soon. You might know a little bit about Medicare Advantage plans in Minnesota, but you might still be looking for more information. Our quick guide is here to hopefully answer some of your questions about Medicare Advantage plans. We also have licensed insurance agents on hand who can help you compare and choose the best Medicare Advantage plan.
Overview of Medicare Advantage Plans in Minnesota for 2020
First, you should understand what a Medicare Advantage plan in Minnesota is. These policies are designed to work as a separate plan rather than working with Original Medicare (Medicare Part A and Part B), which is the case with Medicare Supplement plans. You’ll even be given an insurance card from the insurance company that you purchase your Medicare Advantage plan from, and you’ll use this card when you go to the doctor or go to a hospital instead of using your Medicare cards.
Insurance companies that offer Medicare Advantage plans are subsidized by the government; this is why they are required to follow certain rules and provide certain things for those who buy a Medicare Advantage plan from them.
The perks of signing up are easy: you don’t have to worry about all of the same copayments (copays), coinsurances and deductibles that you’d have with the Medicare coverage through Original Medicare alone. Plus, extra perks like prescription drug coverage are sometimes included with these Medicare plans.
Best Medicare Advantage Plans in Minnesota: When Can You Enroll?
The first step before signing up for a Medicare Advantage plan is to become enrolled in Medicare Part A and Part B. Then, you can sign up for a Medicare Part C plan in Minnesota during these Medicare Advantage Enrollment Periods:
- Medicare Initial Coverage Election Period ICEP: During the period after you first become a beneficiary of Medicare Part A and Part B, you can sign up for an MA policy.
- Medicare Annual Election Period AEP: Each year from October 15 to December 7, you have the opportunity to sign up for, disenroll or change your Medicare Advantage plan.
- Medicare Advantage Disenrollment Period MADP: MADP is now discontinued. It once served as a time when beneficiaries could switch back to Original Medicare (Medicare Part A and Part B) from Medicare Advantage.
- Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period MA OEP: This period started in 2019, and it runs from January 1 to March 31st of each year. This gives you the chance to change your policy if you want to.
- Medicare Special Election Periods SEP: If your circumstances change, then you might need to sign up for a Medicare Advantage plan outside of the standard Medicare Enrollment Period options listed above. SEPs are designed with this in mind. If you lose your dual-eligible status and therefore lose your Medicaid or if you move outside of the network service area for your insurance policy, for example, an SEP will give you the opportunity to sign up for a policy.
Best Types of Medicare Advantage Plans in Minnesota for 2020
You’ll want to compare pros, cons and rates for these different types of Medicare Advantage plans. Then, you can become the beneficiary of a plan that has rates that suit your budget and perks that suit your lifestyle and healthcare needs:
PPO Preferred Provider Organization Plans (PPO) in Minnesota
- Has networks
- Allows you to see a doctor or get care in a hospital outside of your insurance company’s network
- Allows you to pay less if you stick with doctors, hospitals and other healthcare providers in your network.
- Referrals are not required
HMO Health Maintenance Organization Plans (HMO) in Minnesota
- These Medicare Part C policies in Minnesota typically have the cheapest monthly premiums.
- Some HMO policies have $0 premium.
- They are sometimes available as HMO-POS policies with more freedom.
- You’re required to see in-network providers outside of emergency situations.
- You must have a primary care doctor (PCP) who you can see for specialist referrals when needed.
Private Fee-for-Service PFFS in Minnesota
- These private fee-for-service plans set how much the insurance company pays and how much you pay.
- Network restrictions do not apply.
Special Needs Plans SNPs in Minnesota
- People with chronic health conditions or institutional conditions, including health conditions like end stage renal disease ESRD, can enroll in Special Needs Plans
- Medicare Part D prescription drug plans are always included in these policies.
Enrollment Figures for Minnesota Medicare Advantage Plans
You may find these enrollment statistics about Original Medicare (Medicare Part A and Medicare Part B) in Minnesota to be interesting:
- The five largest counties in Minnesota are Hennepin, Ramsey, Dakota, Anoka and Washington.
- There were 1,017,798 Medicare beneficiaries in Minnesota in 2018.
- 569,888 of Medicare beneficiaries in Minnesota were enrolled in Medicare Advantage in 2018.
Do Medicare Advantage Plans in Minnesota for 2020 Cover Prescription Drugs?
Medicare Advantage prescription drug plans are often included in Medicare Advantage policies. Some offer more coverage for medication than others, so take a look at the formulary and prescription drug tiers to see what is and isn’t included and what you will and will not have to pay in regards to prescription medication. You can also sign up for a stand-alone plan if you can’t find an MA policy that has the drug coverage that you want and need.
Network Restrictions for Medicare Advantage Plan in Minnesota
You’ll want to know a little more about network restrictions with certain policies so that you can make the best choice for you:
- In-Network vs. Out-of-Network Within Coverage Area: HMO Medicare Advantage plans and PPO Medicare Advantage plans in Minnesota both cover out-of-network care in emergency situations. An HMO will not pay for out-of-network care in other situations, while a PPO will. If you use an out-of-network provider with a PPO, though, your out-of-pocket expenses will be higher
- Traveling With Plan: With both health maintenance organization HMO plans or preferred provider organization PPO plans, emergency care is covered throughout the United States when you’re traveling. With a PPO, you can take advantage of out-of-network help even outside of emergency situations, although your costs will be higher.
- Moving Across State Lines: Medicare Part A and Part B offer the same benefits in all 50 states, but Advantage policies are different. With Medicare Part C, you will need to change policies if you move outside of your insurance company’s provider network.
Added Benefits of Medicare Advantage Plan in Minnesota for 2020
These benefits, which are not included in Original Medicare, might be included in your Medicare Advantage policy. Look for the company that offers the most perks so that you’ll have the best coverage.
- Hearing care, routine vision and dental care
- Medicare prescription drug plan (Medicare Part D plan)
- Wellness programs
- Silver Sneakers or other similar gym membership
- Recommendations for diet and nutrition
- Allowance for over-the-counter medication costs
- Healthy living seminars and classes
- Transportation to and from medical appointments
- Payment of some or all of the Medicare Part B premium
- Starting in 2020, insurance companies that provide Medicare Advantage plans in Minnesota will be able to add some supplemental non-health related benefits to certain beneficiaries, such as providing help with making structural changes to the home when needed. This is designed to help those who might need help with widening doorways or installing ramps for their homes.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services approved a 2.53% payment increase to Medicare insurers that offer Medicare Advantage plans in Minnesota.
Top Companies offering Medicare Advantage Plans in Minnesota
If you have been shopping around, you have probably noticed there is no shortage of companies that offer Medicare Part C plans in Minnesota.
Of all of the Medicare Advantage plans providers that we have found for Minnesotan seniors, these are some of our favorites:
- UCare for Seniors
- Health Partners
- MHP Senior Solutions Premium
- Medica Clear Solution Essential
As you can see, you have a lot of good choices if you want to compare Medicare Advantage plans in Minnesota for 2020. Calling all of these companies can be difficult and can take forever, but you don’t have to do that to find pricing information. Instead, you can pull it all up with our quote request form, making comparison easier than it might have ever been before.
Minnesota Medicare Resources
Check out these resources for additional help. You may find that you qualify for an assistance program or other help, particularly if you are a low-income individual. You can also browse information about Medicare, Medigap plans, Medicare Part D prescription drug coverage, Advantage health plans, Medicare cost plans and more:
- Minnesota Extra Help with Prescription Drug Costs
- Medicare Savings Programs for Minnesota Residents
- CMS: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
In addition to checking out the resources above, don’t be afraid to give us a call on our toll free number. We have licensed health insurance agents who want to help you reduce your out-of-pocket costs for medical assistance and healthcare services. We can tell you more about policies through companies like Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, so give us a call or browse our website today.