With Medicare you have many different styles of plans to chose from. All of the them work differently with Medicare. I will help you navigate through this to help you determine which plan best suites your needs. There are three styles of Medicare plans out there for you to choose from. Below will give you a brief description of how they work.
MEDIGAP*- These plans work along side Medicare to pick up the deductibles and co-payments that Medicare doesn’t pay. These will have a monthly premium and you will be able to go to any doctor and hospital as long as they accepts Medicare. You should only have few out of pocket cost for medical services.
MEDICARE ADVANTAGE– With these plans you will normally pay $0 or low premiums. For services provided, you will be responsible to pay co-pays. Co-pays vary depending on which type of medical service is being provided. Plans are either an HMO or PPO, HMO will have a required network of doctors and hospitals you must use. PPO will have a network of doctors and hospitals but they will allow you to go outside of network. If you use out of network service you will most likely pay a higher co-pay then if you were in network. Most Advantage plans will include drug coverage with your policy. Extra benefits such as gym membership, dental, eyes, over the counter allowance, transportation and meals can be covered within these policies.
MSA(Medicare Savings Account)*- These plans are like Health Saving Accounts, but the main difference is that the insurance company funds the bank account each year. The way benefits work is that there will be a health deductible that has to be met, once met the insurance will pay the 100% of Medicare covered cost. The money that is put into the bank account will continue to grow each year. If you need medical care you will first use the money that is in your MSA account, if there is less money in the bank account compared to your deductible, this would be the amount the you would be responsible for. With an MSA Plan you are allowed to you any doctor or hospital as long as they accept Medicare.
*With Medigap and MSA you will need to still select a Part D plan to avoid a penalty.