Medigap is Medicare Supplement Insurance that helps fill “gaps” in Original Medicare and is sold by private companies. Original Medicare pays for much, but not all, of the cost for covered health care services and supplies. A Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap) policy can help pay some of the remaining health care costs, like:
Medicare Advantage Plans are a type of Medicare health plan offered by a private company that contracts with Medicare to provide all your Part A and Part B benefits. Most Medicare Advantage Plans also offer prescription drug coverage. If you’re enrolled in a Medicare Advantage Plan, most Medicare services are covered through the plan. Your Medicare services aren’t paid for by Original Medicare. Below are the most common types of Medicare Advantage Plans.
- Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) Plans
- Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) Plans
- Special Needs Plans (SNPs)
Prescription Drug Plans
Each plan that offers prescription drug coverage through Medicare Part D must give at least a standard level of coverage set by Medicare. Plans can vary the list of prescription drugs they cover (called a formulary) and how they place drugs into different “tiers” on their formularies.
2 ways to get prescription drug coverage:
- Medicare Prescription Drug Plan (Part D) . These plans (sometimes called “PDPs”) add drug coverage to Original Medicare.
- Medicare Advantage Plan (Part C) like an HMO or PPO) or other Medicare health plan that offers Medicare prescription drug coverage.
6 tips for choosing Medicare drug coverage
If you’re wondering how to choose a Medicare drug plan that works for you, the best way is to start by looking at your priorities. See if any of these apply to you:
- I take specific drugs.
- I want extra protection from high prescription drug costs.
- I want my drug expenses to be balanced throughout the year.
- I take a lot of generic prescriptions.
- I don’t have many drug costs now, but
- I want coverage for peace of mind and to avoid future penalties.
- I like the extra benefits and lower costs available by getting my health care and prescription drug coverage from one plan, and I’m willing to pick a drug plan with restrictions on what doctors, hospitals, and other health care providers I can use.