Medicare Supplement Insurance plans in Kansas help pay numerous out-of-pocket costs under Original Medicare. Also known as Medigap, private insurers provide these plans with Medicare setting the guidelines on what each plan covers. This page explains your Medicare Supplement plan options in Kansas, who qualifies, and when to apply.
What Is Medigap in Kansas?
Medigap earned its name because it fills in the "gaps" left by Original Medicare (Part A, hospital insurance and Part B, medical insurance).
Those gaps refer to your out-of-pocket costs, not the services that Original Medicare does not provide. Prescription drug coverage, routine vision care, hearing aids, and dental services are a few of the benefits not included with Medicare Parts A and B. That means your Supplement plan will not reimburse you for these services.
The main reason beneficiaries choose to join a Medigap plan is that there is no annual out-of-pocket maximum with Original Medicare. Without Supplemental insurance, you could face tens of thousands of dollars in medical bills – particularly if you have a lengthy hospital stay.
Medigap plans are standardized, which means that you get the same benefits with every Plan A (or B, D, etc.), no matter which insurance company you choose. Premiums, however, are not standardized. Medigap insurers set their own premiums and pricing methods.
Please note that Supplement plans are not standalone health insurance the way Medicare Advantage or private insurance plans are. Again, they supplement your Medicare coverage; they do not replace it.
Who Qualifies for Medicare Supplement Insurance in Kansas?
If you have Original Medicare, you're eligible for a Supplement plan in Kansas. This is true whether you qualify for Medicare due to age or disability.
Kansas offers additional protections to Medigap beneficiaries who qualify for Medicare due to a disability. Namely, they cannot be charged higher premiums than their over-65 counterparts are. This is relatively rare. Although most states require Medigap insurers to offer policies to under-65 enrollees, few of these states set premium limits. And in most states, under-65 Medicare beneficiaries pay significantly higher monthly premiums – some as much as 20 times more than what over-65 beneficiaries pay.
What Does Medigap Cover?
Medigap coverage varies according to which plan you choose. There are 10 basic plans, each represented by a letter (A, B, C, D, F, G, K, L, M, and N). At a minimum, though, every Supplement plan covers your Part A coinsurance and provides an additional 365 lifetime reserve days for inpatient hospital care. The following table details the benefits included in each Medigap plan:
Since Medigap plans only cover services provided by Original Medicare, you cannot get prescription drug coverage with a Supplement plan. You get help paying these costs with a standalone Medicare Part D plan.
Your second option is a Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug plan (MA-PD). However, if you decide to join an Advantage plan, you cannot sign up for Medigap. This is true even if your Advantage plan does not provide prescription drug coverage.
Medigap Plan C and Medigap Plan F in Kansas
Beginning on January 1, 2020, Medigap plans are no longer allowed to cover the Medicare Part B deductible. Two supplement plans offer this this benefit: Medigap Plan C and Medigap Plan F. If you already had one of these plans, you may keep it. However, if you first became eligible for Medicare in 2020, Plans C and F are not available.
Two Medicare Supplement plans provide the same coverage as Plans C and F, minus the Part B deductible. These are Medigap Plan D and Medigap Plan G. We've been recommending these options for years, because most beneficiaries enjoy a lower out-of-pocket overall. This is because the difference in monthly premiums is usually greater than the amount of the Part B deductible.
When Is the Best Time to Join a Medicare Supplement Plan in Kansas?
Your Medigap Open Enrollment Period (OEP) is the best time to join a Medigap plan in Kansas. It lasts for 6 months, starting with the first day you're enrolled in Original Medicare.
We recommend signing up for Medigap during your Open Enrollment Period because it's one of the few times you have guaranteed issue rights. During your Medigap OEP, insurers cannot deny you coverage or charge you more for it, even if you have preexisting medical conditions.
When you do not have a guaranteed issue right, your Medigap application goes through a process called medical underwriting. This includes answering a series of questions regarding age, tobacco use, and medical history. If you do not have guaranteed issue rights, your answers to these questions may lead to a denial of coverage or higher premiums.
How to Choose a Medigap Plan in Kansas
The first thing you need to do when choosing a Kansas Medigap plan is decide how much coverage you need. You'll likely be tempted to choose the plan with the lowest premium, but we encourage you to remember the medical underwriting requirement. If you wait to apply for a Medigap plan that offers more comprehensive coverage, such as Plan G, you may not be able to get it. Or, it may cost you significantly more. When choosing a Supplement plan, it's always a good idea to consider your future medical needs.
Although benefits are standardized, Medigap premiums vary according to the provider, so compare costs carefully. Pricing methods include:
- Attained-age rated: Premiums start out low but rise as you age. These policies are usually the most expensive option over time.
- Community rated: Also known as no-age rated, these plans charge the same premium regardless of age. Over time, these are usually the cheapest Medigap plans.
- Issue-age rated: Premiums are based on your age at the time you join the plan, not your age throughout the life of the policy. They may rise over time due to inflation, though.
Our Find a Plan tool makes it easy to compare Medigap plans in Kansas. Simply enter your location information and coverage start date to review Medicare plan options in your area.
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