Is a Medicare Advantage Plan Right for You?

Many of our clients have found that Medicare Advantage (MA) plans are a good fit for their health coverage needs and budget. In fact, it’s not just our clients who have found MA plans to be compatible with their needs. Over the past decade, MA plans and MA plans that include prescription drug coverage (MAPDs) have grown significantly in popularity. There are several reasons why our clients turn to MA plans, and we’ll explore those more below.

MA Plans are Comprehensive

MA plans are offered by private insurance companies and are required to include the same coverage offered by Original Medicare. In addition, they often include a variety of added benefits. For retirees who are looking for a one-stop or all-inclusive type of coverage, MA plans are a good solution. The additional benefits or “extras” vary by plan, but they can include items like:

  • Telehealth benefits
  • An over-the-counter allowance
  • Dental
  • Hearing
  • Vision
  • A fitness membership

The premiums and benefits for medical and prescription drug coverage are combined into a single plan and generally have one low or zero-dollar premium payment—making it easier for you to keep track of your health care expenses.

MA Plans Offer Stability

Compared to Supplement plans, MA plans are stable and the costs have been decreasing year over year. Additional stability has come from the federal level. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has taken several actions to support Medicare Advantage plans and ensure their continued stability in the coming years. Those actions, which can been seen in detail on the CMS website, enable insurance companies to offer more benefits under their plans while also reducing out-of-pocket prices for seniors. Furthermore, the federal government is offering taxpayer subsidies to encourage participation in Medicare Advantage plans. According to CMS, taxpayers have saved nearly $6 billion via lower premium subsidies.

MA Plans are Relatively Low Cost

MA plans operate as an all-in-one coverage option. As mentioned above, you generally pay a low or zero-dollar monthly premium to receive all of the plan’s benefits. In addition to low-cost premiums, MA plans come with an out-of-pocket maximum that dictates the total annual amount you could pay in medical costs. This maximum protects you from high medical expenses and provides more overall predictability in costs. It also means that your MA plan will cover all of your expenses once you hit your maximum for qualified medical costs. According to data from the Kaiser Family Foundation, all MA plans’ out-of-pocket spending limits have been capped at $7,550 each year for in-network services.

MA Plans Have Strong Networks

Each MA plan has a list of specific doctors, hospitals and providers that are considered “in-network.” MAPD plans will note the pharmacies that are considered in-network, too. Most MAPD plans have networks that are quite large and often include multiple hospital and provider systems. In fact, studies show that MA plans continue to expand their networks, and the popularity and growth of MA plans encourages providers to remain part of a plan’s network.

Find the Right Fit for You

Medicare’s Annual Enrollment Period (AEP) is Oct. 15 through Dec. 7. During this time, you have the opportunity to review your current plan and evaluate if it’s the right fit for your needs in 2021. If you’d like to learn more about MA plans, please contact us at 1-866-557-1313 or schedule a convenient time to receive a call from a client advisor at retiremediq.com/talk.

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