Humana Medicare Supplement Plans
Humana Medicare Supplement Plans, also known as Medigap coverage, protect you against high medical bills. Medigap plans fill in some of the gaps left by Original Medicare. These gaps include deductibles and co-insurance for both Part A and B. In this article, we’ll cover the following:
- The Basics of Humana Medicare Supplement Plans
- The Costs Of Humana Medicare Supplement Plans
- Eligibility For Humana Medicare Supplement Plans
- How To Enroll In A Humana Medicare Supplement Plan
Medicare Supplement plans are designed to cover the costs you would normally pay under Original Medicare. Original Medicare is split into two sections:
Medicare Part A
Part A covers inpatient hospital and institutional benefits. If you are admitted to the hospital, Part A covers most of the cost. Part A also provides coverage for:
- Skilled nursing care
- Hospice care
- Home health care
Medicare Part B
Part B of Original Medicare covers outpatient care and services. Part B provides coverage for:
- Physician visits
- Outpatient surgeries
- Physical and Occupational Therapy
- Medical devices
- Certain cancer treatments like chemotherapy
Cost of Original Medicare
When you have Medicare coverage, services and procedures are not free. You are responsible for certain deductibles, copayments, and coinsurance amounts. These costs are paid by you, out of pocket:
- Part A Deductible—$1,408 per benefit period in 2020. This means that each time you are hospitalized or receive nursing care, you must pay the deductible
- Part B Deductible—$198 for 2020. You pay this amount before Medicare provides coverage for medical services
- Part B coinsurance—you pay 20% of all Medicare-approved services or procedures under Part B; Medicare pays the remaining 80%
It is very important to note that there is no cap to how much you pay in a year. In the worst case, you could end up spending thousands, or tens of thousands of dollars under Original Medicare.
To protect themselves from these out of pocket costs, many people choose to add Medicare Supplement Insurance to their Medicare coverage.
Medicare Supplement policies are sold in various “plans.” Each plan offers different coverage levels and premium cost. The standardized plans are: A, B, C, D, F, G, K, L, M, and N. Not all insurance companies offer each of these plans in every State.
Humana is distinguished by the amount of additional benefits they give you. Besides the standard Medigap benefits, Humana also provides:
- Fitness membership programs
- Hearing care discounts
- Vision care discounts
- Prescription drug discounts
- 24 hour nurse line access
Humana also offers an extra level of benefits with their Healthy Living options. In exchange for a higher premium, you can have vision and Medicare approved dental coverage with your Medigap plan.
Humana is a private insurer, and they set their own premiums. These premiums must be approved by Insurance regulators and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). Humana competes against many other private insurers, which helps to keep them affordable.
Medigap insurers set their premiums in one of three ways. Some states restrict which methods may be used; companies choose which methods to use within each State. It’s important to note that premiums will change over time; the methods below explain how the premiums are calculated.
Community rated Medigap plans set their premiums based on the demographics of a community. Often, you’ll see Medicare Supplement plan premiums set by groups of zip-codes. In community-rated plans, people pay the same rate, regardless of age or gender.
Issue-age rating means that your premium is determined by the age at which you enroll in the Plan. With issue-age rating, your premiums will rise slower over the years, but your premium for early years will likely be higher than under the other methods.
Medigap plans that use attained-age rating change your premium each year based on your age during that policy year. You pay less early on, and your premiums rise as you age. This is a common rating method.
Regardless of which rating method Humana uses in your State, you can expect to pay more if you are tobacco user.
As we’ve already discussed, Medigap plans are a supplement to Original Medicare. They work in conjunction with Part A and B. You need to continue paying your Original Medicare premiums to enroll in a Humana Medicare Supplement plan.
Eligibility for Medigap plans is related to the rules for Original Medicare. One major difference is that many states require you to be age 65 or older to enroll in Medigap, even if you’re eligible for Medicare at an earlier age due to health or disability.
In order to enroll in a Humana Medicare Supplement plan, you must be eligible for, and enrolled in, Original Medicare. If you decline Part B coverage, or stop paying your Part B premium, you cannot enroll in a Medigap plan.
When Can I Apply For A Humana Medicare Supplement Plan?
The best time to enroll in a Medicare Supplement plan is during your Medicare Supplement Open Enrollment Period. This enrollment period lasts for six months, and begins when both of these conditions are met:
- You are age 65 or older, and
- You are enrolled in Medicare Part B
If you work past age 65, and have employer health insurance, your Open Enrollment Period won’t begin until you enroll in Part B.
During Open Enrollment, you’re entitled to purchase a Medigap plan without underwriting. This is called a Guaranteed Issue right. You cannot be declined, and you can’t pay a higher premium due to health conditions.
After your initial Open Enrollment period, you will be subject to medical underwriting if you want to buy a Medigap plan. You may have extra Guaranteed Issue rights in a few circumstances:
- You’re on your first Medicare Advantage plan, and you’ve been on it for less than 12 months (Trial Right)
- You’re Medicare Advantage plan loses or fails to renew its contract with CMS
- You permanently move out of your Medicare Advantage plan’s service area
There are a few other opportunities to enroll in a Medicare Supplement plan with Guaranteed Issue rights; they can be complicated, so be sure to connect with a professional to see if you qualify.
If you don’t qualify for Guaranteed Issue, you can still apply for coverage. Keep in mind, though, that if you’re on a Medicare Advantage plan, you can only dis-enroll from it certain times of year like the Annual Enrollment Period, or the Medicare Advantage Dis-enrollment period.
If you’ve decided that a Medigap plan is right for you, it’s very easy to enroll. First of all, make sure you’re properly enrolled in both Part A and B of Original Medicare. Then connect with a professional to learn more about Humana Medicare Supplement plans. They can help you enroll online, over the phone, or in person.
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