Medicare Conveniences Plans
Medicare Advantage plans are different from Medicare supplements in that they offer several advantages. My clients should consider Medicare Advantage plans as an alternative to Original Medicare coverage. Original Medicare covers Parts A and BC. Medicare Advantage plans, also known as Part C or MA plans, are part of Original Medicare. Original Medicare is not covered by Medicare Advantage plans. Medicare Advantage plans must provide all the services Original Medicare provides.
Original Medicare has providers billing Medicare at first, and then a supplement firm. After Medicare and private supplement companies have paid their portion, individuals might be responsible for the rest. Medicare Advantage plans have the private insurance company being billed. If an individual has a Part C plan (MA) with company XYZ, and visits his primary physician or receives services at a hospital for treatment, the bill will go to company XYZ, not Medicare. An individual may have to pay a copay (or deductible) for the services received.
Medicare Advantage plans can sometimes be called “all in one” plans, as they include other coverages. Part C plans typically include prescription drug coverage. These plans are commonly referred to by the MAPD (Medicare Advantage Prescription drug) plan. Some plans offer coverage for hearing, vision, wellness programs, and/or additional ancillary benefits. Medicare Advantage plans can be very different and should be carefully reviewed on an individual basis.
Medicare Advantage plans can have a premium. These premiums can be very different. There are plans with a $0 monthly fee. However, to be eligible for Medicare Advantage plans, the individual must still pay the Part B premium. Access to plans varies from one county. For example, a $0 monthly Premium Plan may be offered in one county, but not in another.