There is no annual out-of-pocket limit when you have Original Medicare. Many beneficiaries choose to supplement their coverage in some way to protect themselves against exorbitant healthcare costs. Medicare Supplement plans in Mississippi help pay for a variety of services included with Medicare Parts A and B.
What is Medigap in Mississippi?
There are 10 standardized Medicare Supplement plans available in Mississippi (A, B, C, D, F, G, K, L, M, and N). "Standardized" means every Plan A (or D, G, etc.) includes the same benefits. Not every Medigap insurer offers all 10 plans and some provide high-deductible versions of one or more plans.
While benefits are standardized, costs are not. Medigap insurers set their own premiums, as long as they follow state and federal guidelines.
Unlike Original Medicare, you are only guaranteed access to a Supplement plan if you have a guaranteed issue right. At every other time, your application goes through medical underwriting. This process involves answering a series of health-related questions, such as age, tobacco use, and medical history. Insurance companies use medical underwriting to determine whether to sell you a Medigap policy and at what rate.
Who qualifies for Medicare Supplement Insurance in Mississippi?
Federal law states that anyone aged 65 or older AND enrolled in Original Medicare qualifies for Medicare Supplement Insurance. Most states also require Medigap insurers to offer plans to under-65 beneficiaries who qualify for Medicare due to a disability. This includes Mississippi.
Most states allow Medigap insurers to charge Medicare beneficiaries who are under age 65 a higher rate for their plan. In Mississippi, though, insurance companies may only charge their under-65 enrollees 50% more than their over-65 counterparts. This doesn't sound like a positive until you realize that many states place no limit on how much private insurance companies can charge their under-65 beneficiaries.
What does Medigap cover?
Medicare Supplement benefits vary according to the plan you choose. At a minimum, though, every Medigap plan covers the Medicare Part A coinsurance and gives you 365 additional lifetime reserve days for inpatient hospital care.
The following table helps compare Medigap plan benefits:
Please note that Medicare Supplement Insurance only covers services provided by Original Medicare (Part A, hospital care, and Part B, medical services). It does not include prescription drug coverage. You get these benefits with a Medicare Part D prescription drug plan.
Medigap Plan C and Medigap Plan F in Mississippi
As of January 1, 2020, new Medicare beneficiaries may not enroll in either Medigap Plan C or Medigap Plan F. This is due to a new federal law that prohibits Supplement plans from covering the Medicare Part B deductible.
We recommend Medigap Plan D or Medigap Plan G instead. These plans offer the same benefits as Plans C and F, respectively, with the exception of the Part B deductible.
When is the best time to join a Medicare Supplement plan in Mississippi?
The best time to join a Mississippi Medicare Supplement plan is during your 6-month Medigap Open Enrollment Period (OEP). It begins the day you enroll in both Medicare Part A and Medicare Part B and is one of the few times you have guaranteed issue rights. If you're age 65 or older, this means your application cannot be rejected. Insurance companies also cannot charge you a higher premium.
If you're under age 65, you're guaranteed a Medigap policy during your OEP but you will likely have a higher premium. Once you turn 65, you'll get a second Medigap Open Enrollment Period and the same protections as if you'd never had a Medigap plan.
How to choose a Medigap Plan in Mississippi
Since Mississippi Medigap plans are standardized, the first step is deciding how much coverage you want. We recommend choosing the most comprehensive benefits you can afford, since medical underwriting may make that impossible if you don't have a guaranteed issue right.
The next concern is pricing. There are three pricing methods:
- Attained-age rated: Premiums start out low but go up as you age. These policies usually cost the most over your lifetime.
- Community rated: Also known as no-age rated, since premiums aren't based on your age. These are generally the least expensive option.
- Issue-age rated: Premiums are based on your age at the time you join the plan but do not go up because you get older. They may rise over time due to inflation, though.
Most Mississippi Medigap insurers use attained-age and issue-age pricing.
Our Find a Plan tool makes it easy to compare Medigap plans in Mississippi. Simply enter your location information to review Medicare plan options in your area.
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