Health insurance has helped many families afford treatments that they would otherwise not have been able to pay out of their pockets.
Medicare Advantage and Medigap are two such medical insurance plans available in the United States of America that you can opt for, although not at the same time. However, you can switch from Medicare Advantage to Medigap in certain cases.
When to switch from Medicare Advantage to Medigap?
You can only make the switch from Medicare Advantage to Medigap in a certain window of time. Let’s have a look at how to make this switch.
Step 1 – Research for insurance companies
Before you terminate your Medicare Advantage insurance, you need to find the perfect alternative. You can research Medigap policies in your area. You can also call the State Health Insurance Assistance Program to enquire about health insurance provided in your area.
Alternatively, you can dial up individual insurance companies to compare their plans and prices.
Step 2 – Terminate your Medicare Advantage plan
You can only terminate and switch your Medical Advantage plan during certain periods throughout the year. You can terminate or leave during the open enrollment period between Jan 1st and Mar 31st or during the annual election period between Oct 15 and Dec 7.
You may also leave your Medicare Advantage Plan if you are moving and this plan does not cover your new area.
Step 3 – Apply for Medigap or an alternative insurance
Once you leave Medicare Advantage, you need to look for an alternative insurance plan. It is advisable to switch your plans quickly to avoid a health inspection.
You can apply for Medigap or any other alternative insurance of your choice.
Medicare Advantage – Pros and Cons
Medicare Advantage is a plan under Medicare insurance. It is also known as Medicare Part C, as a private insurance option.
You cannot have both Medicare Advantage and Medigap at the same time, you have to pick one.
- Medicare Advantage Plan covers various treatments other than the traditional ones such as vision, dental or wellness programs.
- It is suitable for people with chronic medical conditions and requires special services.
- It also covers prescription drugs.
- This plan is only less costly if the person visits Medicare-approved medical providers.
- Some plans may limit the number of doctors you can visit.
- People who are very sick tend to find Medicare Advantage costly due to various out-of-pocket expenses.
- All plans are not available in every geographic location.
Medicare alternative, Medigap supports various costs that Medicare does not cover. It is the supplement to Medicare Part A and Part B.
Medigap has standard policies that are applicable throughout the country. It is available for adults over 65 years and in some states to adults below 65 years who qualify for Medicare.
- Medigap has standardized plans, meaning even if you move you can keep your plans.
- It covers various costs that Medicare doesn’t.
- Medigap is applicable wherever Medicare is.
- Medigap requires you to pay an extra premium, which can be costly.
- Monthly premiums are higher than Medicare Advantage.
Medicare Advantage and Medigap are plans that can potentially reduce your medical expenses. Make sure you research well before choosing any healthcare plan.