A question many seniors are asking right now is will MA plans be around in 2014? As stated in previous articles Medicare Advantage plans are feeling some hits from the Federal government on their subsidies. With roughly 5 billion dollars spent over the traditional Medicare fee for service costs, Medicare is stating it is more expensive than Original Medicare.
While this is an accurate statement it has many of the 14 million seniors on one of the MA plans very nervous. “I don’t want my Medicare Advantage Plan taken away” – states a senior in the Northeast. Other organizations like AHIP have prompted seniors to contact their congress members to tell them to go against these cuts.
When did MA Plans Start?
Under the 2003 MMA, Medicare Advantage Plans were put into place as well as the Part D plans going into effect in 2006. MA Plans can include Part D drug coverage. However, these plans had been seen in the 90′s as the Medicare + Choice plan that was dismantled because the plans cost more than Original Medicare. When this plan closed down over 3 million people had to go back to Original Medicare and Medicare Supplement Plans.
What are my options if Medicare Advantage Plans stop in 2014
You have options in fact very good options if this happens. Medicare Supplement Companies are forced to offer guaranteed issue Medicare Supplements if your Medicare Advantage plan pulls out of your service area (for more on guaranteed issue rights). This means that you have no health questions for several different plan options in your state, usually the Plan F Medicare Supplement is always one of these plans.
Our advice is to stay on top of what is happening with MA plans and keep up to date on our blog for up to date Medicare news. Call us at 1-877-936-2991 for more help with your Medicare Insurance needs.
Offering Supplemental Medicare plans – Medigap and Dental Insurance
Are you wondering when to apply for Medicare Supplement Insurance? The Medicare and You booklet, published by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, states that the best time to enroll in a Medicare Supplement Plan is during your Open Enrollment Period. Unlike Medicare Part C & D, the Open Enrollment Period for Medicare Supplements is the first 6 months after you reach 65 and are enrolled in Medicare Part B.
Why is it so good to apply during this time?
The reason you want to apply for Medicare Supplement plans during this time frame is because you do not have to answer any health questions. This means that any pre-existing condition is covered with no waiting periods. Also you can apply with any of the companies you choose – you are not funneled to the high risk pool.
When to Apply for Medicare Supplement Insurance?
There are different time frames in which applying for insurance is crucial. As mentioned above there is the Open Enrollment Period for Medigap Insurance. There are also guaranteed issue rights. Without going into too much detail here, there are 7 different time frames when you can enroll in a supplemental policy with no health questions outside of your first 6 months with Medicare Part B.
Some examples of these guaranteed issue rights are: losing group coverage, losing MA coverage, insurance company going broke, or you were lied to or misled into enrolling in a plan. You may be saying, “that’s great, but now what do I do and I how do I prove I am in one of these guaranteed issue time frames?”.
- You have to know when to apply for Medicare Supplement Insurance. An application must be written within 63 days of losing coverage or one of the guaranteed issue rights happening.
- You will receive a letter from the company notifying you that your coverage was cancelled or Medicare Advantage plan will no longer be offered. This will be required when applying for a Medicare Supplement. Submit with your application, if you do not have your letter at the time submit the application but it will not be approved until the letter is received.
When to apply for Medicare Supplement Insurance is important since there are time restrictions. If you need help navigating these time frames call us at 1-800-800-1397.
When to apply for Medicare Supplement Insurance