The Joy of Retirement

Medicare Supplement Plans 2021: Fifty-six percent of the state’s Medicare population are enrolled in Advantage plans because they have lower cost of living, lower pocket costs, and lower costs than employers, while there is a higher percentage of people buying Medicare Advantage plans than private insurance plans.

Individuals already enrolled in Medicare Supplement Plans also have the option to switch to another benefit plan during the open Medicare  enrollment period, which runs from January 1 through March 31. You can join and switch between Original Medicare and Medicare Benefits, or you can switch from Original Medicare to Advantage. This allows Medicare beneficiaries to drop Medicare benefits, switch, add and / or switch between Medicare, Advantage and Original Medicaid, as well as switch Medicare benefits.

If your plan ends on December 31, you can still enroll in original Medicare as long as you make sure you’re still covered before making a formal decision. You can make Medicare health and drug insurance changes during the open Medicare Advantage enrollment period and have your coverage adjusted to your needs at the beginning of the year, but you must have made a decision on whether to enroll.

If you are interested in a Medicare Supplement Plans for 2021, please call 1-(888) 891-0229. Note the differences between Medicare Supplement Plans and Medicare Advantage, because if you qualify for original Medicare, you may be eligible for Medigap.

Before signing up for a Medicare supplemental plan, you must sign up for the drug plan separately from one of the many Medicare benefit plans that offer prescription drug coverage built into the plan. Last year, several plans offered first-day coverage for certain generic drugs. For 2021, many parts of D-drug plans will include deductibles, typically for branded drugs, but several plans will also offer coverage on the first day of certain generics.

If you don’t, a Medigap plan (also known as Medicare Supplement Plan or MedSupp) will pay for the costs you would otherwise have had to pay if you didn’t have original Medicare alone, but it doesn’t limit your out-of-pocket costs. Nationwide, more than half of Medicare beneficiaries get their prescription drugs through an employer – a subsidized plan or Medicaid – and most policyholders get some kind of additional coverage.

According to a news release, the current regulations create challenges for drug manufacturers in reporting payments under value-based arrangements to CMS and hinders payers and manufacturers from coming up from designing new payment arrangements based on the value provided, as reported on MedicalEconomics.com.

CMS’s rules for ensuring that Medicaid receives the lowest price available for prescription drugs have not been updated in thirty years and are blocking the opportunity for markets to create innovative payment models,” CMS Administrator Seema Verma says in the release.  “By modernizing our rules, we are creating opportunities for drug manufacturers to have skin in the game through payment arrangement that challenge them to put their money where their mouth is.”

The Medigap coverage cannot be used in a Medicare Advantage plan, but there are a number of other options that are available to Medicare beneficiaries in the Medicare Supplement Plan.

There are also people in Virginia who have a Medicare cost plan, which is a kind of private Medicare coverage. In 2017, more than 1.5 million Medicare Supplement Plan participants were enrolled in Medicare Advantage plans. Most enrollees were in a Medicare Advantage plan, and the national average was 33 percent at the time. By the end of 2019, the number of beneficiaries of the Medicare Supplement Plan (excluding those with Medicare Part D or Medicare Access Plans) will be about 2.2 million, or about 1 percent of the state’s population.

Next year, 2021, there will be a Medicare Annual Election Period, also known as the Medicare Open Enrollment, which runs from October 15 to December 7, 2020. The original Medicare plan must come in late 2019, the Medicare Supplement Plan in 2020, but not 2021.

This is also a good time to see if there are other programs that could save money on Medicare premiums and prescription drug costs. If you want to change your Medicare Supplement Plan or any other part of your health insurance plan, this is the right time.

If your Medicare Supplement Plan has been approved and you are enrolled in it, you can switch to a Medicare Advantage, RX, or PDP plan once the insurance is gone. Check your projected spending and guarantee that you will be guaranteed at least 30 percent of your monthly premium for the next three years.

It is important to know that if you are automatically enrolled in original Medicare, you will face a gap in prescription drug coverage because you will not automatically receive the new Part D plan. Remember, if your plan ends and you don’t make any changes until December 31, you can still enroll in Medicare for the next three years. If you have additional help and have until the end of February to make changes to health and medication protection, sign up from 1 January. But if the plan expires but you haven’t made any changes and don’t make any changes, you can’t sign up for Medicare.

In an effort to reduce Medicare costs, people who join the program after January 1, 2020, will be able to choose a Medicare Supplement Plan that covers Medicare Part B deductibles. That law sets out those changes to “try to reduce the unnecessary costs of Medicare” and eliminate the need for additional health and drug coverage for people with pre-existing conditions. Medicare Part B covers prescription drugs as well as medical costs such as hospitalizations and prescription drugs.