Even if you have Medicare to help pay for your healthcare needs, you may find it doesn’t cover every instance or cost. Thankfully, Medigap coverage can help you with outstanding costs. Aetna offers a variety of Medigap plans for you to choose from. Take a deep dive into these offerings to gain a firm understanding of your options and decide which is best for you and your needs.
A Quick Dip Into Medigap Plans
First, let’s take a surface look at what Medigap plans are. Medigap is supplemental health insurance you buy from a private company. The extra insurance is meant to fill in the financial gaps left by Medicare, such as deductibles, copays, and the cost of healthcare received outside U.S. borders.
You’re eligible for a Medigap plan as long as you already have either Medicare Part A or Part B, but not if you have a Medicare Advantage plan. Finally, Medigap plans come with a monthly premium, and they are intended to cover a single person. Now, on to what Aetna has to offer.
Aetna’s Medigap Plan A
Rather than paying copays as you may with Medicare Parts A and B, Aetna’s Medigap Plan A aims to eliminate that. Here’s the level of coverage you can expect:
- Copayments/coinsurance for hospice care
- Medicare Part A coverage and coinsurance for medical benefits
- Medicare Part B copayments or coinsurance
- The initial three pints of blood needed for a medical procedure
With this particular plan, you can enjoy an additional 365 days of healthcare coverage after your Medicare benefits run out. Bear in the mind that the availability of this plan depends on where you live.
Medigap Plan B
The main difference between Aetna’s Plan A and Plan B is the fact that Plan B takes care of the Medicare Part A deductible. What’s the deductible? It’s included in the Medicare Part A tier. It requires subscribers to meet a deductible of $1,340 per term (as of the year 2018) before hospital benefits kick in. That deductible amount is covered with Medigap Plan B. With that in mind, it’s vital to note that Plan B does not cover the deductible for Medicare Part B. Just like Aetna’s Plan A, Plan B is not offered in every state. Expect the same level of coverage as what’s listed in the bullet list above for Plan A.
Medigap Plan C
Unless you live in Michigan, you are not eligible for Medigap Plan C. With that in mind, non-Michigan residents may want to skip over this section. Aetna’s exclusive Plan C includes everything from Plan B, plus a few extras:
- Deductible for Medicare Part B
- Coinsurance for skilled nursing facility care
- Foreign travel emergencies, but only up to plan limits
It’s important to note that Medigap Plan C comes with an extra monthly premium cost.
Medigap Plan D
Don’t live in Michigan but feel Plan C could be a good match for your healthcare needs? Plan D could take good care of you. Basically, Plan D includes most of the coverage in Plan C above, but it’s not restricted to Michigan. That said, this plan is only available in some areas, so you’ll need to do research to determine whether you live in one of those areas. Also, as of 2018, Aetna only serves 14 states.
One of the major differences between Plan D and Plan C, other than being offered outside of Michigan, is that Plan D does not cover the Medicare Part B deductible.
Medigap Plan F
If you’re looking for maximum coverage, talk with a Medicare specialist about Aetna’s Medigap Plan F. Aside from the plan’s monthly premium, you won’t have to worry about out-of-pocket costs. Plan F covers everything touched on above in the Plan C breakdown, but it also includes a single added benefit: Medicare Part B excess charges. Such excess charges are what you would expect to pay if your current doctor doesn’t accept Medicare’s terms regarding payment for medical services.
Medicare decides on a specific amount regarding any medical or healthcare services you receive, but what if your doctor doesn’t agree with that pricing structure? You will bear financial responsibility for any extra cost not covered by Medicare, which includes the 20 percent Part B coinsurance. With Plan F, you won’t have to go out of your way to find a doctor who accepts Medicare’s pricing structure.
Medigap Plan G
Perhaps you love the sound of Plan F but can’t afford it (plus it’s worth pointing out that Plan F will not be offered at the federal level starting in 2020). If so, set your sights on Medigap Plan G. This particular plan covers almost everything from Plan F, but it does not include the deductible for Medicare Part B. This could be worth it if you can handle the yearly deductible of $183 for Part B.
Medigap Plan N
Maybe you desire a comprehensive Medigap plan but want to save money. With Plan N, you’ll have nearly everything mentioned in Plans D and G. The biggest difference is that you will not be covered for Part B excess charges like you would in Plan G. Also, with Plan N, you bear responsibility for copayment amounts up to $20 for office visits and $50 for visits to the ER that don’t require hospitalization.
Here’s a quick reference table to make it easier to determine which of Aetna’s plans could work best for you:
|Benefits||Plan A||Plan B||Plan C||Plan D||Plan F||Plan G||Plan N|
|Medicare Part A coinsurance and coverage for hospital benefits||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Medicare Part B copayments or coinsurance||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Coinsurance or copayments for hospice care||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Initial three pints of blood||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Medicare Part A deductible||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Coinsurance for skilled nursing facility care||No||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Medicare Part B deductible||No||No||Yes||No||Yes||No||No|
|Foreign travel emergencies up to plan limits||No||No||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Medicare Part B excess charges||No||No||No||No||Yes||Yes||No|