Utah Medicare Supplement Plans (Medigap)
Utah Medicare Supplement plans are purchased when you are seeking additional coverage. These plans were created to complement your Original Medicare coverage. This includes other out-of-pocket expenses, such as deductibles, copays, and coinsurance.
Medigap insurance is the same as a Medicare Supplement plan. Each of these plans can be purchased through private insurance companies.
There are several options and plans for Utah Medicare coverage. Medicare coverage plans in Utah state may seem extensive, but can be explained pretty simply.
Utah Medicare Options Explained
- Part A (Hospital Insurance): In Utah, Part A Medicare will cover any necessary inpatient procedures or hospitalization.
- Part B (Doctors Insurance): Medicare Part B was created to cover medical expenses that occur outside of a hospital setting. This includes doctor visits, additional testing, and outpatient procedures. Medicare Part A and Part B may be combined to create the Original Medicare supplement plan.
- Part C (Medicare Advantage): This plan comes from any Medicare approved private health insurance companies. Medicare Advantage will replace your Part A and Part B coverage, but could hold some limitations.
- Part D (Prescription Drug Plan): Medicare Part D covers the costs of prescription drugs needed for health care.
Supplement plans for Utah Medicare beneficiaries, assist in the costs for healthcare that Original Medicare will not cover. These plans are structured to aide your current Medicare plan.
Medicare Eligibility in Utah
If you are seeking Medicare coverage, there are a few qualifications you may need first. To be eligible for a Utah Medicare Supplement Plan, you must be:
- 65 years of age or older, and enrolled in Medicare Part B, or
- Disabled, under 65.
As a senior, 65 years of age or older, you must enroll in Medicare when you are first eligible. If you do not enroll when you are first able to, you may incur additional charges. This is caused by the Part B Late Enrollment Penalty. If you do not enroll within your first 12-month period, your Medicare Part B premium will increase by 10% each year.
Typically, if you currently receive disability benefits from Social Security, or Railroad Retirement benefits, you automatically qualify for Part A and Part B (the Original Medicare) Medicare coverage. At this time, our carriers do not offer coverage for Utah residents who are disabled, under 65. However, this does not mean there are no carriers who offer plans to those on disability.
Enrolling in Medicare Supplements in Utah
If you are currently a Utah resident, your Open Enrollment Period (OEP) will start on the 1st day of the month you are at least 65 years old, and when your Medicare Part B has become effective.
For example, if your 65th birthday was on February 31st of 2018, and you got Medicare Part B became effective on April 20th, your open enrollment period would begin on May 1st. Once you have determined when your OEP begins, it will be in effect for 6 months. Within this 6 months, you are granted Guaranteed Issue (GI).
Guaranteed Issue is the period of time after enrollment, when insurance companies are required to allow you to enroll in a Medicare supplement plan, or Medigap policy. With guaranteed issuance, no senior can be denied a Medicare supplement plan or Medigap policy.
Utah Medigap Costs
When it comes to Medicare prices, the costs will vary. Cost is determined by the insurance carrier, not the state. When determining the cost, the carrier will take into consideration your location, age, and sex. This means, Medicare costs in Salt Lake City, Utah may vary from premiums in South Jordan, Utah.
Medigap carriers classify costs into three different pricing methods.
- Issue Age Rated: This pricing method is is based on the age you were at the time you purchased your policy. Costs will not increase because of your age. However, the older you are when you purchase your policy, the more you pay.
- Community Rated: Everyone will pay the same amount, regardless of age. Your premium will not go up as you get older.
- Attained Age Rated: Medigap that is age attained rated is calculated by your current age. This is likely the lowest-priced option at first, but will increase as you age. This increase could be anywhere from 1.5%, up to 5% each year.
Please keep in mind, there are some policies that may seem like a good deal up front. In reality, you could end up paying more than anticipating. Be sure to do plenty of research when considering a Medicare policy provider.
Top Medicare Supplement Plans in Utah
If you are comparing Utah Medicare plans, you should know that the benefits of each letter plan stay consistent throughout each provider. The only thing that may vary is the cost. The most commonly chosen Medicare plans are Plan N, Plan HDF, Plan F, and Plan G.
- Plan N: Medicare Plan N covers expenses not paid through Medicare health insurance coverage. While Plan N may not be full coverage, it is considered one of the more affordable plans available.
- Plan HDF: This plan was designed to work with Medicare Part A and Part B (the Original Medicare). With this plan, you receive full coverage on all out-of-pocket costs. That includes co-payments, deductibles, coinsurance, and any excess charges that Original Medicare does not cover. High Deductible Plan F holds you responsible for any medical expenses up to your designated deductible amount. Because of the deductible, the premium for the HDF plan is much less than Plan F.
- Plan F: Medicare Plan F leaves beneficiaries with minimal out-of-pocket expenses. Regardless of the provider, you will receive the exact same coverage. This plan covers most of the remaining hospital and doctor costs, after Medicare handles their portion of the costs.
- Plan G: This plan is sold by private insurance companies and all providers offer the same benefits. Remember, prices vary with every provider. Plan G and Plan F are the only plans that cover any of your excess charges.
Utah Medicare Advantage Plans
Medicare Part C, also known as Medicare Advantage is one of the better, more full coverage plans. However, if you choose a Medicare Advantage Plan, you will be required to give up your Part A and Part B coverage. Once you choose a provider for your primary coverage, you will no longer have Medicare Part A and B. Medicare Part C (Medicare Advantage) takes the place of those plans.
Medicare Advantage is a great option for many people. While it is popular, Medigap may give you a bit more freedom. If you should decided to choose Medigap, you are not limited to where you seek health care in Utah. With Medicare Advantage, there are restrictions on where you receive health care.
Both Medicare Advantage and Medigap have their benefits. One of the biggest concerns for those seeking health care is cost. We usually find that Medigap is less expensive, and has less out-of-pocket risk. Medigap, along with Original Medicare, gives you the best coverage opportunity during emergency medical situations.
If you’re not careful, and don’t plan ahead, you could be looking at excess costs for prescription drugs. Most medical health situations require prescribed medications, and your health care bill can start to add up.
With Part D Prescription Drug coverage, you can avoid paying a majority of the cost of your prescribed medications.
Select plans do include some drug benefits already. However, you do not want to wait and find that you do not have coverage to pay your prescription drug costs.
If you do not purchase prescription drug coverage soon after qualifying for Original Medicare, you may be subject to a Part D penalty.
This penalty is calculated by multiplying the national base beneficiary premium of 1% times the number of months that you did not possess Part D prescription drug coverage.
How Can I Learn About Medicare in Utah?
Moving forward with Medicare benefits, we advise that you gather as much information as possible. If you have any additional questions regarding Medicare plans, Medigap, Medicare Advantage, or Prescription Drug plans, please contact us today! We would be happy to set you up with one of our agents to help you get started in the right direction.
If you would like to skip the phone call, and just get a quote, fill out the form at the bottom of the page. If you are still in the process of conducting your independent research, you can compare rates here.
Additional Resources for Medicare Beneficiaries in Utah
The cost of health care can add up, and seem intimidating, creating unwanted stress, but it is important to be aware that there are options if you need extra help.
MSP, or Medicare Savings Program, currently offers four types of programs to those who may require extra financial assistance.
You may also opt for a Senior Health Insurance Counseling Program (SHIP). Each state has their own individual program. Each provides assistance to those who currently have, or are eligible for, Medicare, Medicare Supplements, and Medicare Advantage.
Medicare FAQ for Utah
- Who accepts Medicare in Salt Lake City? There are currently several physicians who accept Medicare in Salt Lake City, Utah.
- Can I get Medicare and Medicaid in Utah? Yes, there are some cases where someone is eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid coverage. If you currently possess both, your costs will likely be covered in full.
- Can I apply for Medigap in Utah online? If you are currently eligible for enrollment, yes, you can apply for Medigap online. However, before doing that, we suggest contacting us to begin gathering quotes for different plans and providers. Or, you can compare quotes and plans using our rate form above.