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Top 5 Medicare Supplement Plans

Medicare Supplement Insurance plans are a helpful addition to Original Medicare because they help enrollees pay for out-of-pocket costs leftover after the federal government pays its portion.

The top 5 Medicare Supplement Insurance policies for 2022 also offer beneficiaries freedom to choose healthcare providers instead of staying within a network of providers. Because of this, Medicare Supplement plans are helpful for people who travel frequently either within the US or abroad.

Private health insurance companies sell Medicare Supplement plans to help enrollees pay for costs like copayments, coinsurance and deductibles. Medicare Supplement plans are also called Medigap plans because they cover the financial gap left after Original Medicare pays for services delivered under:

  • Medicare Part A – Inpatient hospital costs, hospice, skilled nursing facility care and some home health care
  • Medicare Part B  – Outpatient medical appointments, lab work, preventative care, medical supplies and equipment. Medicare pays 80 percent of these costs. Medigap plans cover the rest in most cases.

In addition to the top 5 Medicare Supplement plans, Medicare enrollees in most states can choose from 10 different, standardized, lettered plans, such as Plan F, Plan G and Plan N. These plans are not standardized in Wisconsin, Massachusetts and Minnesota.

Find Plans in Your Area
 

#1. Medicare Supplement Plan G

Coming in at #1 on the top 5 list in 2022, Medicare Supplement Plan G is the most comprehensive popular plan option for policyholders whose eligibility for Medicare began on or after Jan. 1, 2020.

Plan G covers: 

  • Medicare Part A coinsurance and hospital costs up to an additional 365 days after Medicare benefits are used
  • Medicare Part B coinsurance or copayments
  • First three pints of blood
  • Part A hospice care coinsurance or copayments
  • Skilled nursing facility care coinsurance
  • Part A deductible
  • Part B excess charges
  • Foreign travel emergency. Pays 80 percent of the billed charges for certain medically necessary emergency care outside the U.S. after you meet a $250 deductible for the year.

To get an idea on pricing, here is what you would expect for a 65-year-old female, nonsmoker Plan G monthly premium average:

  • $121.81 in the 28205 zip code in Charlotte, NC, with a range of $86.46 to $121.81 per month 
  • $163.81 in the 80231 zip code in Denver with a range of $126.48 -$219.67 per month

#2. Medicare Supplement Plan N

Coming in at #2 on the top 5 list, the health insurance benefits offered under Medicare Supplement Plan N are similar to Plan G. However, Part B excess charges are not covered under Plan N.

Plan N pays 100 percent of the Part B coinsurance – except for a copayment of up to $20 for some office visits and up to a $50 copayment for emergency room visits that don’t result in inpatient admission.

Plan N is a bit less expensive than Plan G.

Here is what you would expect for a 65-year-old female, nonsmoker Plan N monthly premium average:

  • $104.83 in the 28205 zip code in Charlotte, NC, with a range of $76.22 to $154.33 per month 
  • $128.60 in the 80231 zip code in Denver with a range of $104.21 -$167.97 per month

#3. Medicare Supplement Plan F

Those whose Medicare eligibility started before Jan. 1, 2020, are eligible for Medicare Supplement insurance Plan F. This is the most comprehensive plan because it covers everything in Plan G, but it also pays the Part B deductible. Because of this, it’s the most expensive option among different plans for Medigap.

Now, under federal law, Medigap plans can no longer offer Part B deductible coverage.

The monthly Plan F premium average for a 65-year-old female, nonsmoker: 

  • $173.09 in the 28205 zip code in Charlotte, NC, with a range of $122.03 to $240.95 per month 
  • $218.06 in the 80231 zip code in Denver with a range of $181.14 -$259.85 per month

#4. Medicare Supplement Plan C

First, Medicare Supplement Plan C is not the same as Medicare Part C, also known as a Medicare Advantage plan. Plan C is one of the 10 standardized Medicare Supplement plans sold by private insurers.

Like Plan F, Plan C is not available for those who became eligible for Medicare after Dec. 31, 2019. If you were eligible for Plan C before that time, but have not yet enrolled, you can still purchase Plan C.

Plan C health insurance covers the Part B deductible, but it doesn’t cover Part B excess charges. Plan C also helps with: 

  • Medicare Part A coinsurance and hospital costs up to an additional 365 days after Medicare benefits are used
  • Medicare Part B coinsurance or copayments
  • First three pints of blood
  • Part A hospice care coinsurance or copayments
  • Skilled nursing facility care coinsurance
  • Part A deductible
  • Foreign travel emergency at 80 percent

#5. High Deductible Medigap Plan G

Last but not least on the top 5 Medicare Supplement plan list for 2022, is High deductible Plan G, it has the same benefits as the regular Plan G except an enrollee will pay all deductibles, copays, and coinsurance until costs reached the amount of the high deductible ($2,370 in 2021).

Then, they would not have to pay any more of the Medicare allowable amount except for the monthly premium.

For some Medicare beneficiaries, high-deductible plans end up saving them money in the long run even with higher costs upfront. Monthly premiums with a high deductible plan are lower than similar plans that don’t have high deductibles.

To determine if a high deductible plan would be economical for you, please have a conversation with a licensed insurance agent like us at Policy Guide. We consult Medicare beneficiaries on a regular basis and will be able to identify if this option would be the best Medicare Supplement plan for you over time.

Here are the average high deductible Plan G premiums for a nonsmoking, 65-year-old woman. 

  • $42.99 in the 28205 zip code in Charlotte, NC, with a range of $34.76 to $60.61 per month 
  • $83.59 in the 80231 zip code in Denver with a range of $49.03 to 69.13 per month

Frequently asked questions:

Are Medigap plan premiums based on income?

Medicare Supplement insurance premiums aren’t determined by income. Where you live plays a big role in how much you will pay for Medigap coverage. The cost also depends on what the plan covers and how the insurance company determines the price of the policy and premiums.

How can I reduce my Medicare Supplement Insurance premiums?

One way to reduce your premiums is to purchase a Medicare Supplement policy during your six-month Medigap open enrollment period. This period automatically starts the first month you have Medicare Part B and you’re 65 or older.

When you purchase your policy during the open enrollment period, the insurance company can’t base rates on your health history. Outside of that window, they can take pre-existing conditions and other health concerns into consideration when pricing your policy.

Do Medicare Supplement plan premiums increase with age?

That depends. In industry speak, prices are based on:

– Community- or no-age rated: The same monthly premium is charged to everyone who has the Medigap policy, regardless of age. Premiums may go up because of inflation and other factors, but not because of your age.

– Issue-age or entry-age rated: The premium is based on your age when you buy the Medigap policy. Premiums are lower for people who purchase them at a younger age and won’t change as they get older. Premiums may go up because of inflation and other factors, but not because of your age.

– Attained-age rated: The premium is based on your current age, so your premium goes up as you get older.

When is the best time to buy a Medigap policy?

The best time to buy a Medigap policy is during your six-month Medigap Open Enrollment Period.  This period automatically starts the first month you have Medicare Part B and you’re 65 or older.

During the Medigap open enrollment period, you will get better prices and more choices among Medicare health insurance. During this time, Medicare Supplement insurance companies cannot take pre-existing conditions or any health history into consideration when pricing the plan.

What Medigap Companies do you offer?

We offer Medicare coverage from a number of insurance companies, including:

Related Topics

Key Take Aways
  • Medigap Plan G has quickly become the top Medigap Plan
  • High Deductible Plan G is a great option for those that want lower premiums with comprehensive coverage
  • Plan F is only available to those who are Medicare eligible prior to 1-1-2020