As a result of the 2010 Medigap Modernization act which came into force on June 1st. 2010, there will be some changes in the current Medicare supplement plans. Such changes will not affect people who have been included in a Medigap plan before then, and will only apply to people who enrolled as of June 1.
Medigap plans E, H, I and J are eliminated by Medicare, but those currently enrolled in these plans can remain in them without change. Two benefits that are also eliminated include the At-Home Recovery benefit, and the Preventative Care benefit, since these were underutilized by Medicare beneficiaries. Those registered in plans prior to June 1, 2010 that have any of these benefits may continue to use them. Other important changes include the addition of the Hospice benefit on every Medicare supplemental plans, and this will be a key benefit for all Medigap plans.
The new modified 2019 Medicare supplement plans will also include two new plans that are likely to be very attractive to those who are currently enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan. These two plans include Medicare Supplement Plan M and Supplement Medicare Plan N. As a result of the increasing cost of the Medicare Advantage Plan premiums and the increasing number of physicians who choose not to participate, Medigap plans offer M and N provide different features for cost sharing that helps in providing lower premiums for both when compared to plans such as the Medicare Supplement Plan F or Plan G.
The new Medicare Plan M offers unique cost-sharing options that are particularly attractive to relatively healthy Medicare beneficiaries. Plan M offers 50% of the Medicare Part A deductible, which was $ 1100 per service period in 2010. For example, if you are hospitalized and have a Medigap Plan M, it is expected that you will cover one-half of the Medicare deductible of $ 1,100 or $ 550. The current rules continue to apply to the deductible for Medicare Part A. If you travel for 60 days or more and need to return within the calendar year, you will have to pay this deductible again.
With a Medicare Supplemental Plan M, you are also responsible for paying the Medicare Part B deductible, i.e. $ 155 for the year 2010. There is no medical co-payment practice for this franchise and the 20% coinsurance is paid by the plan.
Another new plan (Plan N) was presented on June 1. This plan also offers cost-sharing options for the beneficiary that are very similar to Medicare Supplement Plan M, but with plan N, they take the form of a copayment.
If you are hospitalized and you have a Medicare Supplement Plan N, it is expected that you will pay a co-pay of $ 50. For doctor visits, there is a copay of about $ 20 per visit, after you have met the annual Medicare Part B deductible ($ 155 in 2010).
These co-pays will allow for the premium of Medigap Plan N to be less than the current Medicare Supplement Plans available, also making it an outstanding choice for those who are coming off of a Medicare Advantage Plan (Whether the plan is leaving your area, or you are in the enrollment period and wish to make a change).