MEDIGAP PLAN G COVERAGE FACTS
Medigap Plan G is one of 10 Medigap plans available for Original Medicare beneficiaries. If you’re trying to decide which Medicare Supplement plan will work best for you, it helps to take a long look at each plan in detail.
The following are the most important things to know about Medigap Plan G and its benefits.
WHAT ARE MEDIGAP PLANS?
Medigap plans are separate healthcare insurance policies for people who already have Original Medicare Parts A and B. Since Original Medicare doesn’t cover certain deductibles, copayments, and coinsurance fees, many retirees prefer to have a Medicare Supplement plan.
Some Medigap plans cover many fees and out-of-pocket costs, while others cover fewer. Medigap Plan G is one of the most comprehensive offerings because of its breadth of coverage.
WHAT IS MEDIGAP PLAN G?
Medigap Plan G is one of the 10 Medicare Supplement plans. It’s not quite as comprehensive as Medigap Plan F, nor is it as popular, but it’s been gaining attention because of its lower up-front cost. Additionally, since Medigap Plan F will disappear in 2020, Medigap Plan G might become the new favorite among retirees.
The cost of Medigap Plan G varies depending on where you live and whether you use tobacco. If you search for quotes for Medicare Supplement Plan G via Ensurem’s Medigap Quoter, you’ll see what various insurance companies charge in monthly premiums. We used the profile of a 65-year-old female non-smoker in Los Angeles, California.
The lowest quote for Medigap Plan G was $159.66, while the lowest monthly premium for Medigap Plan F was $193.22. That’s a significant difference.
WHAT DOES MEDIGAP PLAN G COVER? 8 Differences From Other Plans
To decide whether Medigap Plan G is right for you, consider the following coverages under this Medicare Supplement plan and how it compares to the other nine plans.
1. ORIGINAL MEDICARE PART A COINSURANCE AND HOSPITAL CARE
You don’t have to pay a coinsurance fee when you go to the hospital if you have this Medigap plan. Plus, it will cover 365 additional days in the hospital beyond what Original Medicare covers. This is the one constant among all Medicare Supplement plans.
2. ORIGINAL MEDICARE PART B COINSURANCE OR COPAYMENT
You don’t have to pay a coinsurance fee or a copay when you see the doctor, either. While this might seem like a small thing, writing checks for $10 or $20 every time you see the doctor can add up over the years.
3. FIRST THREE PINTS OF BLOOD
Original Medicare covers any blood taken after the first three pints. If you have Medigap Plan G, you won’t have to pay for those first three pints, either. By contrast, Medigap Plans K and L cover only 50 percent and 75 percent of these costs respectively.
4. HOSPICE CARE COPAYMENT OR COINSURANCE
Original Medicare and Medigap Plan G beneficiaries who suffer from a terminal illness might want to participate in some form of hospice care. Whether it’s at home or in a facility, hospice care provides end-of-life care to ease pain and increase comfort.
Medigap Plan G takes care of any copayment or coinsurance you might otherwise have to pay out-of-pocket. Several other Medigap plans also cover these costs in totality, but Medigap Plans K and L only cover a portion.
5. COINSURANCE FOR SKILLED NURSING CARE
Skilled nursing care is temporary care while a patient recuperates from an illness or injury. Medigap Plan G covers any coinsurance fees, which means that you won’t have to pay a percentage of the fees out-of-pocket. Medigap Plans A and B do not cover any part of skilled nursing care coinsurance, while Medigap Plans K and L cover a portion.
6. ORIGINAL MEDICARE PART A DEDUCTIBLE
In 2018, the Original Medicare Part A deductible is $1,340. This is the amount of money you must pay for hospital care before Original Medicare will take over payments. Medigap Plan G eliminates the deductible, which can provide considerable financial relief if you ever face a hospital stay. Medigap Plans K, L, and M cover portions of the deductible between 50 and 75 percent.
7. ORIGINAL MEDICARE PART B EXCESS CHARGES
When you see a doctor, he or she might charge more than what Original Medicare covers. These are called excess charges, and unless you have a Medicare Supplement plan to cover them, you must pay the fees out-of-pocket. Medigap Plan G is one of only two plans that eliminate the excess charges — the other being Plan F.
8. FOREIGN TRAVEL EMERGENCY CARE
Should you decide to travel abroad, Medigap Plan G will cover 80 percent of costs incurred related to emergency medical care in a foreign country. Since many people enjoy traveling after they retire, this benefit can become highly useful. Medigap Plans A, B, K, and L won’t cover health costs abroad.
WHAT DOESN’T MEDIGAP PLAN G COVER?
The only difference between Medigap Plans F and G is that Plan F covers your Original Medicare Part B deductible. As of 2018, the deductible is $183.
As we mentioned above, however, you can enjoy considerable monthly savings if you go with Medigap Plan G instead. Using the numbers we listed above for the plans in Los Angeles, California, Plan G would cost $1,915.92 per year, while Plan F would cost just over $2,318. If you calculate the difference, Medigap Plan G would save you a little over $402, which is much more than the deductible itself.
Remember to look at the big picture when choosing a Medicare Supplement plan. Even though Medigap Plan F is a first-dollar plan, meaning that it covers everything from the first dollar forward, it’s not necessarily the most financially beneficial plan.
If you’re considering a Medicare Supplement insurance policy, Medigap Plan G might offer the ideal coverage for you. It’s a good balance between Medigap Plans F and N, and the rates are reasonable across the country.
Don’t decide on a plan without doing your research first, though. Use the Medigap Quoter to find quotes on the Medicare Supplement insurance plans that fit your needs best. Compare different insurance companies and premiums side-by-side.