I thought now would be a good time to deal with the newest Medicare “elephant in the room”, which are all the rumors circulating about Plan F.You may have read about the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA) which was signed into law by President Obama.
Rumor has it that starting in 2020 Medicare Supplement Plans F and C are going away. While there will be changes, Medicare Supplement Plans F & C are not going anywhere. What is actually happening is that people who become eligible for Medicare after January 1, 2020, will no longer be allowed to enroll in Plans F or C. People who were eligible for Medicare Part A before January 1, 2020, can enroll in Plan F or C and may keep their plans as long as they choose. In addition, people currently on Medicare Supplement Plans F or C may keep their plans beyond 2020.
Medicare Plan F is the most popular Medicare Supplement plan sold so you may be asking yourself why Medicare would eliminate its most popular plan. There are several reasons. In a previous article, I wrote how Medicare has experienced an 188% increase in enrollments in the last 50 years. Furthermore, 10,000 people a day are turning 65. When you add-in increasing medical cost, you can see how Medicare is experiencing severe financial pressures.
Medicare Plans F & C offer what is called “first-dollar coverage”, and legislators feel that if Medicare recipients had more “skin in the game” it would reduce Medicare costs. In other words, legislators want people to think about whether they need to see a doctor for minor cuts, scrapes, or aches. In order to accomplish this, Medicare Supplement Plans that provide first-dollar coverage will no longer be available to new Medicare beneficiaries as of January 1, 2020.
Medicare Supplement Plan G will still be available.
What is the difference between Plan F and Plan G?
As many people already know, Plan F pays all of the Medicare Part A & B deductibles. It also pays all coinsurances and copays. Plan F pays 100% of all Medicare-approved expenses. The only difference between Plan F and Plan G is that with Plan G you are responsible for paying the Part B deductible, which for 2018 is a $183.00. After you pay the Part B deductible, Plan G will pay for 100% of all Medicare-approved expenses for the remainder of the calendar year. The Part B deductible is an annual deductible, so you will be responsible for paying it once a year before your Plan will cover its share of expenses.
Summary of Medicare changes starting January 1, 2020
- If you are on Plans F or C you will be able to keep your plan.
- If you were eligible for Medicare prior to 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.
If you experience a higher than normal rate increase on your Plan F through your current company I can provide you with competitive quotes from multiple A-rated companies.
Your questions and concerns are my business, and I am here to help. I will provide you with the information you need to make an informed decision.
Call or email me with any of your Medicare questions or concerns.