Choosing Medigap or Medicare advantage
There are plenty of things to consider when comparing Medigap and Medicare Advantage plans. Choosing the best plan relies on many factors including the costs (e.g. premiums, copayment, coinsurance, and out-of-pocket fees), eligibility, and provider choice and availability.
It also depends on whether the plan covers prescription drugs, if it’s renewable, any extras that come along with the plan, and whom it’s best for.
Generally, both are offered by private insurance companies, and both help to cover the gaps of regular Medicare. On the contrary, Medigap plans are offered as an addition to the regular Medicare benefits while Medicare Advantage is a separate entity from Medicare altogether. In fact, a purchase for a Medicare Advantage plan results in de-enrollment from Medicare.
The benefits of Medigap
The benefits of Medigap plans are standardized by the federal government, meaning that plans sold by different insurance companies all offer the same benefits. Also, they offer services from a large network of doctors and caregivers. However, Medigap always require an additional monthly premium, unlike some Medicare Advantage plans which may require no monthly premium at all.
For Medigap, prescription drug coverage is not included. In order to receive Rx coverage, any stand-alone (PDP) plan may be available. Also, Medigap only covers the same as Original Medicare with no routine dental, vision, physicals, or any alternative medicine.