Medicare Supplement Plans in Hawaii
You may consider comparing rates for Medicare Supplement plans in Hawaii once you’re enrolled in Medicare Part A and Part B. These Medicare Supplement plans are often referred to as Medigap policies because they cover the gaps that are left from Original Medicare.
For instance, a Medicare Supplement plan in Hawaii may cover your Medicare deductibles, copayments and coinsurance payments. Some Medigap plans will also cover Medicare Part B excess charges and/or medical expenses charged overseas. You can compare rates online to make sure that you select the best Medicare Supplement plan in Hawaii, but there are some things that you must know before taking that step. This page will tell you everything that you need to know to make an informed decision.
Medicare Supplement Plans in Hawaii: Enrollment Statistics
- The five largest counties in Hawaii include Honolulu County, Hawaii County, Maui County, Kauai County and Kalawao County.
- In 2015, there were more than 200,000 Medicare beneficiaries in Hawaii. This represents approximately 17 percent of the state’s population.
- In 2015, more than 7,000 Hawaiian residents enrolled in Medicare Part A and Part B plus a Medicare Supplement plan.
- In 2007, close to 60 percent of Hawaiian Medicare beneficiaries had no chronic conditions. More than 70 percent of those enrolled in Medicare and Medicaid were diagnosed with chronic conditions.
- The most common chronic conditions suffered by Medicare recipients in Hawaii include heart disease, diabetes, and osteoporosis.
How Are Rates Calculated for Medicare Supplement Plans in Hawaii?
If you’re enrolled in Medicare Part A and Part B due to disability rather than age, you’re entitled to receive the same Medigap rates as a beneficiary aged 65 or older. This means that you don’t have to wait until you turn 65 to receive Medigap coverage without your medical conditions impacting your premium. This is one thing that sets Medicare Supplement plans in Hawaii apart from plans in many other states.
Your age at the time of enrollment in Medigap is one of the most important factors because insurance companies have a choice when determining how much weight to place on age. This is often one of the most significant differences between Medicare Supplement plan rates when you compare insurance carriers online.
Take a look at the three methods that insurance companies may use:
Your current age impacts your current rate, and you will receive premium increases as you age. This is the most prominent type of Medigap pricing structure in most other states.
Your age at the time your Medicare Supplement plan is issued impacts your rate. You don’t have to worry about incremental increases due to age, and you will receive the lowest rate if you enroll shortly after turning 65.
Your age has no impact on your premium. Every beneficiary subscribed to a particular plan receives the same rate.
How Many Medicare Supplement Plans in Hawaii are Available?
There are 10 Medicare Supplement plans in Hawaii. If you count the high-deductible version of Medigap Plan F, there are 11 plan options. This alternate plan allows you to receive the comprehensive benefits that come with Plan F, but you can pay a higher deductible in exchange for a lower premium.
The federal government standardizes Medicare Supplement plans. This means that each plan offers the same benefits to all subscribers regardless of the insurance company chosen. Plans are labeled with letters A through N, which makes it easy to compare premium rates online.
Keep in mind that the cheapest Medicare Supplement plan quoted today may turn into one of your most expensive options if your insurance company uses an age-attained rating system. Make sure to familiarize yourself with the rating methods that companies may use so that you can predict the future rates for your chosen plan before enrolling.
How Do Medicare Supplement Plans in Hawaii Cover Drugs?
Now that Original Medicare includes Part D, insurance companies are not permitted to add prescription drug coverage to their Medigap policies. Once you’re enrolled in Medicare Part A and Part B, you will have the chance to also enroll in Part D.
You can compare premiums online to find the best Medicare prescription drug plan available to you. Just as you select your Medigap plan, you will choose your prescription plan. This means paying two premiums each month.
If you struggle to pay for your Medicare Supplement plan plus your Part D premium, you may qualify for the Extra Help program. This is a Medicare assistance program designed to help seniors pay for prescription medication.
Medicare Supplement Plans in Hawaii: When Can I enroll?
When you enroll in Medigap depends on a variety of factors, including your age and your healthcare coverage when you turn 65. Take a quick look at your enrollment opportunities:
Initial Enrollment Period
Unless you qualify for Original Medicare due to disability, this is your first opportunity to enroll in Medicare Supplement plans. The period starts the month that you turn 65 and closes six months later. You receive guaranteed enrollment and renewal as long as you apply within that six months. You will also answer no questions regarding your medical history, and your diagnosed health conditions won’t impact your premium.
Special Enrollment Periods
If you didn’t enroll in Medicare or Medigap when you turned 65 because you already had healthcare coverage, you might qualify for a special enrollment period later in life. These periods are generally shorter than the initial enrollment period, but they do allow you to receive guaranteed enrollment and renewal.
- Anytime Enrollment
No Medigap open enrollment period comes around annually, but you can apply for Medicare Supplement plans in Hawaii at any time. If you do so outside of the initial or special enrollment periods, you will go through underwriting and your medical history will impact the premiums that you’re offered. Some insurance companies may also decline your application outside of those periods.
Can I Use My Hawaii Medicare Supplement Plan In Other States?
The freedom to choose your medical providers regardless of their location is one of the benefits that come with the standardized Medicare Supplement plans. You may see a change in your premium if you move from one zip code to another, but your home location has no restriction on the doctors that you visit. Some Medigap policies may even cover some of your overseas medical expenses.
Hawaii Medicare Resources
- Hawaii State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) – All Medicare beneficiaries in Hawaii are entitled to free counseling and guidance regarding healthcare. Family members and loved ones are covered well.
- Hawaii Executive Office of Aging Support Programs – There are many free community programs designed to assist Hawaiian seniors with Medicare and other healthcare issues.