Medicare Supplement Plans in Wisconsin
What is Medicare? Medicare is a fee-for-service health care program for seniors, in which the government pays health care providers directly for services that fall under Parts A and B of Medicare benefits (see below). However, if you are looking for more coverage than Original Medicare, you can purchase one of our Medicare Advantage Plans to receive all your Part A and Part B benefits.
Medicare is divided into four categories. This allows you to customize your personal coverage when shopping for a comprehensive policy.
- Part A (hospital insurance): Covers hospital care, emergency services, nursing home care, home health services and hospice.
- Part B (medical insurance): Covers medically necessary services and supplies used for diagnosing and treating medical conditions, and preventative services for illness prevention and/or early detection. Examples include ambulance services, mental health care, outpatient procedures and clinical research.
- Part C: Combines Parts A and B and often part D as well.
- Part D: Offers prescription drug coverage.
What Medicare options are available? Original Medicare offers coverage for services and supplies that are considered to be medically necessary, such as doctor visits, lab tests and wheelchairs. There are several alternative plans you can choose from for additional coverage, and each plan must offer at least the same coverage as Original Medicare. There are two Medicare plans that we can assist you with.
- A Medicare Advantage Plan, also known as Part C, combines Part A and Part B as a replacement to Medicare for more comprehensive health care coverage. This plan can be customized with additional coverage, such as a prescription drug program (Part D), vision and dental.
- A Medicare Supplemental Plan, also known as Medigap, has a higher premium but supplements the coverage gaps and deductibles that Part A and Part B leave behind.
Why do you need Medicare? Seniors are in the most need of health care, but once retired monthly premiums can become hard to maintain. Enrolling in the Medicare program allows you to get the care you need for a minimal charge.
What is Supplemental Medicare? Medicare Supplement, or Medigap, is a plan sold by private insurance companies to fill in the coverage gaps and deductibles that Original Medicare does not cover. For instance, if Medicare covers 80 percent of a doctor’s visit, Medigap will cover the remaining 20 percent. With Supplemental Medicare, there is little additional cost to you for health care beyond your premium.
Medigap policies are standardized and regulated by law. This means that each company must offer the same plans (Parts A-N), in Wisconsin it is a Base plan with riders,with the only difference being the price. However, prices can vary widely between companies. We can help you weed through the options to find the right provider with the right price for you.
What should you know about Supplemental Medicare? Medigap policies are available to anyone enrolled in Part A and Part B (hospital and medical insurance) of Medicare. Open enrollment, a time frame in which you cannot be declined coverage, begins either when you first enroll in Part B or when you turn 65. This six-month window is the best time to purchase your Medigap policy.
Your Medigap premium will be an additional charge on top of your Medicare Part B premium (Part A is free), and in return you will receive more comprehensive coverage for your health care needs. If you have a Medicare Advantage Plan (Part C), be sure to cancel your coverage before your Medigap policy begins.
Why do you need Supplemental Medicare? It is important to remember that Medicare does not completely cover your health care costs. A supplemental plan ensures a broader range of coverage so you do not have to pay out-of-pocket with each doctor visit. A low monthly premium will give you peace of mind as your need for health care grows.