Medicare Supplement Plans in Minnesota
Once you’re enrolled in Medicare Part A and Part B, you’re qualified to enroll in any one of the Medicare Supplement plans in Minnesota. These plans are designed to cover the out-of-pocket expenses that remain after Original Medicare is billed, including copayments, deductibles and coinsurance charges. These out-of-pocket expenses are often referred to as gaps in the Medicare system, which is why Medicare Supplement plans are often referred to as Medigap policies.
Minnesota is one of three states that vary from the standardized Medicare Supplement plans that are used in most states. Rather than selecting from 10 plans identified by numbers, Minnesota beneficiaries can choose between the Basic Plan and the Extended Basic Plan. This page will answer all of your questions about Medicare Supplement plans in Minnesota, allowing you to make educated decisions regarding your healthcare coverage.
Medicare Supplement Plans in Minnesota: Enrollment Statistics
- The five largest counties in Minnesota include:
In 2010, Anoka, St. Louis, Dakota and Ramsey counties had the highest number of Medicare beneficiaries.In 2015, there were more than 900,000 Medicare beneficiaries in Minnesota. This translates to approximately 12 percent of the state’s population. More than 120,000 Medicare beneficiaries were also enrolled in Medigap policies in 2015.
How Are Rates Calculated for Medicare Supplement Plans in Minnesota?
Minnesota law requires all insurance companies to use one system for determining Medigap rates for all Medicare beneficiaries. This means that someone under the age of 65 with a disability will receive the same premiums as a senior over the age of 65. There are three ways that an insurance company may determine those rates:
Your age at the time of Medigap plan enrollment determines your premium. Your rate doesn’t increase due to your advancing age in the future.
Your rate is always determined by your current age. Your premium will get higher as you age.
Everyone subscribed to a particular Medicare Supplement plan receives the same rate regardless of age.
Community-rated policies are the most common and popular Medicare Supplement plans in Minnesota. Rates are also determined by your zip code and the density of population in your local area.
Medicare Supplement Plans in Minnesota: Plan Options
As an Original Medicare beneficiary, you may choose between two Medicare Supplement plans in Minnesota:
Doesn’t cover Medicare Part B deductible and other out-of-pocket expenses
Extended Basic Plan
Covers Part B deductibles plus all out-of-pocket expenses after the annual $1,000 out-of-pocket maximum is satisfied
Each of these plans has their own list of benefits, with the extended plan offering the most comprehensive coverage in exchange for higher rates. Beneficiaries selecting a Medicare Supplement plan in Minnesota also have the option of adding up to four riders:
- Insurance hospital deductible for Medicare Part A
- Part B deductible
- Preventive care not offered through Original Medicare
- Customary and usual fees
The rider system allows you to customize your Medigap plan in MN, but it also makes it more difficult to compare rates before making your final decision. In addition to comparing rates for each of the plans, you need to compare available riders and prices for those additions to your coverage.
How Does A Medicare Supplement Plan Cover Prescription Drugs?
No Medicare Supplement plan in Minnesota will include prescription drug coverage. You will need to purchase a separate plan for your medications.
If your income is limited and you struggle to pay premiums for either of the Medicare Supplement plans as well as your prescription drug plan, you may qualify for one of Minnesota’s Medicare Savings Programs. You may also qualify for Medical Assistance, which is Minnesota’s Medicaid program.
Medicare Supplement Plans in Minnesota: When Can I Enroll?
The best time to enroll in a Medicare Supplement plan is during your Medigap open enrollment period. Your first opportunity is the initial enrollment period, which starts the first day of the month in which you turn 65. This period lasts for six months, and there are some big benefits to enrolling before it closes:
- Guaranteed Acceptance
The insurance company cannot deny you coverage for either of the Medicare Supplement plans.
- Guaranteed Renewal
The insurance company cannot cancel your Medicare Supplement plan in Minnesota as long as your premiums are paid.
- No Underwriting
You get to bypass underwriting, and you don’t have to answer questions regarding your medical history.
Unlike many other states, Minnesota extends these guaranteed benefits to every Medicare beneficiary regardless of age. Beneficiaries under the age of 65 who qualify for Original Medicare due to disability don’t need to wait until they turn 65 to receive guaranteed acceptance.
Can I Use My Minnesota Medicare Supplement Plan In Other States?
Even though the type of Medicare Supplement plans in Minnesota can be different from the plans offered in most other states, you can still use your plan in any state. Your zip code may impact your premium, but it has no impact on your choice of doctors. You have the freedom to see any medical professional in the country who accepts Medicare as payment.
Minnesota Medicare Resources
- Minnesota Senior LinkAge Line – Six Minnesota public agencies work together to answer questions regarding the best Medicare resources and other issues relevant to seniors.
- Minnesota Health Insurance Counseling – A convenient service offering free counseling for all Minnesota Medicare beneficiaries and their families.