Who should consider enrollment in a Medicare Advantage plan?
Some people’s circumstances are a good fit for enrollment in a Medicare Advantage plan. The following video details some of the top reasons why people choose the Medicare Advantage option. Watching may help you determine if Medicare Advantage is right for you.
Top reasons to enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan
Enrolling in a Medicare Advantage plan is just one option available and it’s not necessarily for everyone. Medicare plan options include:
- Original Medicare with or without Part D
- Original Medicare + Medigap with or without Part D
- Medicare Advantage which often includes Part D
People choose Medicare Advantage for these reasons:
1. Money. Medicare Advantage premiums are often lower than premiums for a Medigap policy and if Part D is included (MAPD), a separate Part D premium is not required.
Choosing Medicare Advantage over original Medicare is seen as optimal because of the potentially high out of pocket costs associated with the Part A deductible and 20% coinsurance amounts for Part B coverage.
2. Convenience. Many people like the idea of choosing a plan that includes both medical and Part D coverage. Also, knowing what out of pocket costs will be required ahead of time is reassuring.
3. Extra Benefits. All Medicare Advantage plans include Parts A and B and most include Part D, but unlike original Medicare, members can receive some extra benefits. These benefits will vary from plan to plan and may include:
- Gym memberships
- Transportation to and from medical visits
- Discounts on health and wellness products
These benefits may or may not require an additional premium.
4. Easy Qualification. In order to be eligible for enrollment in a Medicare Advantage plan you must have Parts A and B, live in the plan’s service area and not have end-stage renal disease.
Liberal medical underwriting attracts many people that may not qualify for a Medicare supplement if they are not in an Open Enrollment Period of if they do not qualify for Guaranteed Issue Rights.
5. Special Needs. Medicare Advantage Special Needs Plans are designed to be very attractive to people on Medicare with special needs. There are Special Needs Plans for people who:
- Have a qualifying chronic illness
- Are dual eligible (have both Medicare and Medicaid)
- Live in an institution such as a nursing home.
6. Medicare Eligible and Under 65. People receiving federal disability benefits become Medicare-eligible on their 25th month of disability but may not have the option of buying a Medicare supplement.
Not all States require insurance companies to offer Medicare supplement insurance to people under 65. People who do have it available are often surprised to learn that the premiums are much higher than if they were becoming Medicare-eligible due to turning 65.
Comparing Medicare Advantage plans
If you determine that your situation warrants a Medicare Advantage plan a good choice, you should do a thorough study of available plans. When comparing plan, take a look at these three documents:
- Summary of Benefits
- Provider Directory
- Part D Formulary
Medicare Advantage enrollment can be easy if you do your research and choose a plan for the right reasons.