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Medigap Plan N

What is Medicare?

Medicare Supplements

Medicare Supplement (Medigap) Plan N is one of the more popular Medicare Supplement plans. Although Plan F and Plan G are the most popular options, Plan N is 3rd place in popularity for the plans that offer the most coverage. As you may know, Plan F covers the most and has the most expensive monthly premiums out of these three plans. Plan G has less expensive premiums but does not cover the Part B deductible. Plan N is usually the least expensive of the three, but it does not cover the Part B deductible or co-payments for doctors and emergency room visits. Also called Medigap Plan N, this option was created for consumers who like the idea of paying a lower premium in exchange for taking on a small annual deductible and some co-pays.

This plan was introduced in June 2010. Compared to the rest of the plans, it is a relatively new Medicare Supplement plan. It was popular almost immediately because it has low monthly premiums while still offering quite a bit of coverage.

All Medigap Plan N policies are the same, no matter which insurance company you choose. You can find Plan N available in many states from various well-know insurance companies.

What Does Medigap Plan N Cover?

This standardized Medicare supplement will cover the 20% that Medicare Part B doesn’t. It also pays for your hospital deductible and all your hospital co-pays and coinsurance. You will pay your own excess charges, Part B deductible and some small co-pays at the doctor’s office and the emergency room.

Here’s a visual picture that demonstrates what Medicare Supplement Plan N covers, and what is left for you to cover:

What Does Plan N Cover at the Doctor’s Office?

You will pay nothing for any of the standard Medicare preventive care services. This includes services like screenings for cancer and diabetes and cardiovascular conditions. It also includes annual physicals, colonoscopies, vaccines and a variety of other normal tests.

Your Medicare Supplement Plan N coverage will also include visits to the doctor for injury and illnesses, durable medical equipment, ambulance, surgeries, home health, lab-work and other imaging tests, diabetes supplies, and many more services.

Main thing to remember is that if Medicare Part A or B covers it, then your supplement will also cover it. Medicare pays 80% and then sends the bill to your Supplement plan.

If your doctor does not accept Medicare assignment, you will pay a 15% excess charge.

What Does Plan N Cover in the Hospital?

Your Medicare Part A hospital benefits provide coverage for inpatient hospital services, skilled nursing, home health, hospice and blood transfusions. While you would normally owe a deductible for your hospital stay, your Medigap Plan will pay that for you.

Here’s a quick list of items covered in the hospital by Medicare Supplement Plan N:

  • The Part A Hospital deductible (in 2020, this is $1408) and your coinsurance (20%)
  • An extra one year (365 days) of hospital benefits after Medicare’s coverage runs out
  • Hospice care at any certified hospice center
  • Coverage for the first 3 pints of blood

Plan N also provides foreign travel emergency benefits up to the plan’s limit.

Your Medigap Plan N Costs

Medicare Supplement Plan F, Plan G, and Plan N are the three most popular Medicare Supplement plans, because they offer the most coverage. Of the three most popular plans, Plan N is usually the least expensive option. Though the premiums are typically lower, it still offers quite a bit of coverage. Supplement Plan N offers identical basic benefits like the more popular Plan F, but you agree to pay a share of a few things that you wouldn’t pay on Plan F.

You will pay the small annual Part B deductible ($183). You will also pay co-payments up to $20 for doctor appointments.  Emergency room visits have a $50 copay.

If you do not frequently visit the doctor, a Plan N may be the right choice for your Medicare Supplement coverage.

Finally, people with Medigap N also pay excess charges to some medical providers. Providers can charge 15% more than what Medicare allows. This is called an excess charge. Plan N does not cover this for you like Plan F or G would.

Tip on Excess Charges: You can avoid paying excess charges by simply asking your doctors up front if they accept Medicare. If they do, you don’t need to worry about excess charges.

Supplement Options: Another option is to compare Medicare Plan N v Plan G. People who enroll in Plan N also often look at Plan G as an alternative. Although Plan G will cost slightly more on the monthly premium, the main difference is that Plan G covers the small co-pays and excess charges.

Plan N – Savings Example vs Plan F

Carolyn saves up to 33% less on Plan N Monthly Premiums

Carolyn tells her agent that she visits the doctor only once a year. To Carolyn, Plan F isn’t really necessary due to her hardly ever needing to use the plan. Her agents explains that Plan N has premiums that are about 33% less than Plan F if she would be willing to pay her co-pays on a few minor medical services.

Supplement Plan N covers her entire hospital deductible. On Carolyn outpatient, she will pay the Part B deductible ($198) on her first doctor visit of the year. Carolyn will  then pay a co-payment of up to $20 when she sees her physicians during the rest of the year. She may pay an excess charge if her doctor does not accept Medicare.

A glance on how these medical expenses on Plan N might affect Carolyn:

Let’s say Carolyn visits her foot doctor in the middle of the year, after her deductible of $198 has already been satisfied. Medicare’s assigned rate for a visit to this foot specialist is $50. If the doctor does not accept medicare, he can bill Carolyn for up to 15% above the $50 approved rate for this visit, or a maximum of $7.50 in this scenario.

Carolyn owes the $10 copay, and her supplement will pay the remainder of the approved charges.

Medigap Plan N Eligibility

You are eligible to enroll in Plan N as long as you have Medicare Parts A and B. You must also live in the plan’s service area. The best time to enroll in Medicare Plan N is during your Medicare Supplement open enrollment period. This six-month window starts with your Part B effective date. It’s your one chance to enroll in any Medicare supplement plan without health underwriting. No insurance company can turn down your application due to health conditions.

If you missed your one-time Medicare Supplement open enrollment period, you can still apply for a Supplement Plan N. We can go over the health questions on all the company’s applications in Nevada to see if you can get approved.

Plan F vs Plan N – Which Medigap Plan is Right for You?
Plan F has been what everyone calls “The Cadillac Plan” and has been the most popular selling plan for decades. However, in recent years Plan G and Plan N have been gaining in popularity. There are many people out there who would rather have lower premiums and then just pay the Part B deductible and doctor co-pays IF they need to use those services.
See the illustration below for a side by side comparison. In this image we are using rates for a Male, non-tobacco user turning 65 in Las Vegas in 2020.

Plan F vs Plan N
Paul buys Plan $192.15/ mo Steve buys Plan N – $129.47/ mo
Plan F pays ALL deductibles Plan N Pays Part deductible and coinsurance
Plan F pays ALL deductibles He pays $198 Part B Deductible and $20 Doctor Co-Payment

Medigap Plan N Insurance Companies

Compare Medicare Supplement Plan N policies with our free comparison report.

At Nevada Medicare you can compare Medicare supplement Plan N policies for numerous different insurance companies, such as Blue Cross Blue Shield Medicare Supplement Plan N, Aetna Medicare Supplement Plan N, Humana Medicare Supplement Plan N and UnitedHealthCare Plan N among many others.

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