Medigap Plan D, like any Medicare Supplement plan, helps to cover for holes that Original Medicare left behind. It is one of ten standardized plans sold by private insurance companies. It has a few benefits added to the core policy benefits that are offered in every Medigap plan. Core policy benefits are included in every Medicare Supplement plan, and they offer coverage for hospitalization, medical expenses under Part B of Medicare, the first 3 pints of blood every year, and hospice care coinsurance.
It is worth mentioning that Plan D must not be confused with Part D. Medicare Part D is a prescription drug coverage, and it is one out of three parts of Medicare, a federal health insurance program. Medigap Plan D is one out of ten Medicare Supplement Plans, supplemental insurance to Medicare that helps with paying Medicare costs.
PLAN D COVERAGE
Medigap Plan D offers coverage for:
- Part A hospital costs and coinsurances for an additional year after Original Medicare benefits are used
- Part A hospice care coinsurance and copayments
- Part B coinsurance and copayments
- First 3 pints of blood every year
- Skilled nursing facility care coinsurance
- Part A deductible
- 80% of travel emergencies while outside the U.S.
It does not provide coverage for Part B annual deductible and excess charges. Excess charges are considered doctor`s charges that can legally extend beyond the Medicare-approved amount for service payment. But, it is a very rare situation because most of the doctors in the U.S. accept Medicare assignment.
MEDIGAP PLAN D COSTS
You are responsible for covering Medicare Part B deductible which is 223$ in 2022. After your deductible is met, you are 100% covered for other costs. Of course, you must pay a monthly premium that may cost you between 120$ – 200$ each month. In general, Medigap plan premiums are higher in states who have a higher cost of living.
WHEN CAN I ENROLL?
Every individual who is eligible for Medicare can enroll in any Medigap plan during the Medigap Open Enrollment Period (Medigap OEP) which begins the first day of a month when you are 65 and already enrolled in Medicare Part B. However, if you enroll later, not in the initial enrollment period, instead of during the annual enrollment period you may be responsible for a late enrollment penalty. This means that you would pay higher monthly premiums as long as you have that plan. So, it is recommended to enroll in all Medicare supplement plans when you are first eligible for them.