You probably have heard that as of January 1, 2020, Medicare Supplement Plan F will no longer be available to people aging into Medicare. Because of this change, people want to know the difference between Medicare Supplement plan F and Medicare Supplement Plan G.
Medicare Supplement Basics
Let us start with some basics about Medicare Supplements. Medicare Supplement plans are sold by private companies and cover some or all the cost of not covered by original Medicare.
In 47 states Medicare Supplement plans are standardized, meaning all plans with the same letter must offer the same benefits. The only difference in any Plan F is the monthly premium; the benefits are the same. A word of caution: The lowest premium is not always the right plan.
The Differences Between Plan F and Plan G
Plan F pays all Medicare Part A & B coinsurances, copayments, and deductibles. In other words, Plan F pays 100% of all Medicare-approved expenses.
Plan G pays the Part A deductible but does not pay the Part B annual deductible. Once you pay the Part B deductible, Plan G will pay for 100% of all Medicare-approved expenses for the remainder of the calendar year.
Summary of Plan F vs Plan G
The only difference between Plan F and Plan G is the Part B annual deductible, which for 2019 is $185.00 annually. You are responsible for paying it once a year. After the Part B deductible has been paid, Plan G it is no different from Plan F.
Summary of Medicare changes starting January 1, 2020
If you are enrolled in Plans F or C before January 1, 2020, you will be able to keep your plan.
If you were eligible for Medicare prior to January 1, 2020, but delayed it because you had other creditable coverage, you still will be able to purchase Plans F or C.
If you become eligible for Medicare after January 1, 2020, you will not be able to purchase Plans F or C.
Original Medicare does not have networks. You can use any doctor, hospital, or lab that accepts Medicare anywhere in the United States, which makes them perfect for people who travel.
When you visit your doctor, the doctor bills Medicare. Medicare reviews the claim and will pay your doctor. Medicare then sends the bill to your Medicare supplement company and they are required by law to pay the claim.
If your doctors accept Medicare, they will also accept your Medicare Supplement plan. By the way, Medicare supplement and Medigap are two different words for the same product.
In the descriptions above, I use the term Medicare-approved expenses. It is important to ask your doctor, lab or hospital if Medicare covers a specific test or procedure. If Medicare does not approve them, you, not your Medicare supplement plan, will be responsible for the cost. As an example, Medicare does not cover eye examinations related to prescription glasses. If you need new glasses and see, a doctor for an eye exam Medicare will not pay for it. Moreover, since it is not a Medicare-approved expense, your Medicare supplement will not pay any part of your bill.
Medicare can be confusing. We can provide you with the information you need to make an informed decision. We make the complex simple by shopping the plans and rates for you. There is never a fee and you are under no obligation to use my services.
Medicare Explained in Plain English