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Tips To Keep In Mind When Considering Medicare Supplement Plans

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While an Original Medicare plan should provide you with decent coverage, there will likely still be a "co-insurance" amount or deductible that you may be expected to pay to your healthcare provider even if Medicare is paying for most of your bill. Today, it's possible to get coverage for this "gap' in Original Medicare by enrolling in a Medicare supplement plan. Here's a little more information about how these plans work and what you might want to know before enrolling in one.

Medicare Supplement Plans Can Cover Your Co-Pay and Reduce Your Expenses Even Further

Let's say you are an Original Medicare plan that has 20 percent co-insurance for a specific service or health exam. This would mean that Medicare would pay your health care provider 80 percent of the cost of that service or exam but you as the patient would be billed by the doctor or hospital for the other 20 percent. 

But if you have a Medicare supplement plan from a private insurance provider, that 20 percent co-insurance will be paid by the supplement plan. Your only expense will then be the monthly premium you are paying to the provider of the supplement plan.

Supplement Plans Are a Good Idea If You Know You Will Need Frequent Care

If you've recently signed up for Original Medicare but you don't need frequent health care and have no intention of actually making use of your plan on a regular basis, it might not make sense to take out a supplement plan as you will be paying a premium to the supplement plan provider for a service that you might not use very often. But as you get older, it's more likely that you could fall into ill health and need more frequent health care. In this scenario, the cost of the premium you pay to the supplement plan provider will likely be less than what you would pay as "co-insurance" under Original Medicare, making the supplement plan a good idea.

Supplement Plans May Not Cover Everything So Know What You Are Getting

While there are differences between plans from different providers, know that your supplement plan may not "supplement" Original Medicare for every possible expense that could come up. For example, one common exception for many supplemental plans is that they won't cover your prescription drug co-pays. The only way to know what is and what is not covered though is to contact a supplemental insurance provider directly, like Franklin Benefits Group, and begin to do your research.