Best Medicare Supplement Plans in California – F, G and N Benefits
You’re eligible to sign up for the best Medicare Supplement insurance plans in California for your needs after you’ve enrolled in Medicare Part A and Part B. Supplemental policies are designed to pick up the out-of-pocket expenses that aren’t covered by Original Medicare insurance. Those expenses are known as “gaps,” so Medicare Supplement plans are also known as Medigap policies.
California Medigap insurance policies are offered by licensed insurance companies authorized by the California Department of Insurance. Original Medicare often leaves seniors to pay overages, coinsurance, copayments and deductibles. It’s time-consuming and expensive to track all of those out-of-pocket expenses. Medicare Supplement insurance plans in California allow you to pay one monthly premium instead.
All Medicare Supplement plans are standardized by the federal government, so all plan types offer the same benefits. It’s still important to understand how the Medigap system works so that you select the best Medicare supplement plan in California based on your healthcare needs and budget.
Best Types of Medicare Supplement Plans in California
There are 10 standardized Medicare Supplement insurance plans in California. Each plan is regulated by the federal government and must include a pre-determined package of benefits. It’s important to compare your options to determine your personal best Medicare Supplement plan in California. While terms of coverage are always predictable, rates are set by the insurance company and may vary significantly.
When selecting the best Medicare Supplement insurance plans for your needs, consider your minimum and maximum premiums. How much can you afford to pay each month for Medigap plans in California? Some Medigap plans also cover emergency medical care when you travel abroad, but not everyone needs that coverage.
Some factors that may determine your choice of Medigap plans in California include:
- Expected frequency of primary care visits
- Expected frequency of specialist visits
- Current health condition
- Lifestyle risks (smoking, unhealthy diet, sedentary, etc.)
- Plans for international travel
Select your plan and compare rates from each Medicare insurance company with those factors plus your budget in mind. Select the plan with coverage that best corresponds to your healthcare needs. This is a personal decision that every beneficiary should make with care.
Benefits of Medicare Supplement Plan F in California:
By far, Medicare Supplement Plan F in California is the most popular. In fact, this is a very popular plan around the country. The main reason why many Medicare beneficiaries prefer this plan over the other Medicare plans is that it offers the most comprehensive coverage on top of the standard Medicare coverage.
Of the plan options, you’ll typically pay more for Medigap Plan F in California. You can often find good rates through companies like United Healthcare and Blue Cross Blue Shield, though, and you’ll be able to enjoy these benefits:
- Part A hospital coinsurance
- Hospital costs up to 365 days after benefits through Original Medicare are exhausted
- Part A hospice care copays or coinsurance
- Part A deductible
- Part B deductible
- Part B preventive office visit coinsurance
- Part B coinsurance or copays
- Excess charges for Medicare Part B
- First three pints of blood needed for a medical procedure
- Coinsurance for care in a skilled nursing facility
- Limited foreign travel emergency care
In addition to a standard Plan F policy, you can also sign up for a high deductible Plan F policy if you’d prefer.
Benefits of Medicare Supplement Plan G in California:
In addition to the standard Medicare benefits of Medicare Parts A and B, you can enjoy ample coverage through Medigap Plan G in California. It offers almost the same level of coverage as Plan F, but it’s a cheaper plan.
- Does NOT cover Medicare Part B deductible
Benefits of Medicare Supplement Plan N in California:
If you’re mostly happy with the benefits offered through the federal Medicare program but would like a little bit of additional coverage, purchasing Medigap Plan N in California through an insurance agency might be your best bet. There is some cost-sharing required, but monthly premiums are usually pretty cheap.
- Does NOT cover Part B Deductible
- Does NOT cover Excess Charges for Part B
- Requires $20 copay for office visits
- Requires $50 copay for Emergency room visits
Medicare Supplement Plans in California: When Can I Enroll?
You’re eligible to apply for Medicare Supplement insurance plans in California once you’ve enrolled in Medicare Part A and Part B Original Medicare insurance. This is most often when you turn 65, however, some are eligible under the age of 65 due to disability. The best time to buy Medigap plans in California is during your initial enrollment period, which is offered by the U.S. government for everyone who signs up for Medicare. That period starts the month that you turn 65 and lasts for six months.
During the Medigap open enrollment period, no insurance company can consider your medical history or pre-existing conditions when determining your rates. If you have health issues that a Medicare insurance company is likely to consider risky or expensive, you will receive the most affordable rates during that period.
If you don’t enroll in a Medigap plan during your open enrollment period, you can still apply for Medicare Supplement insurance plans in California. You may qualify for a special enrollment period that prevents the insurance company from considering your health history when determining your rates.
Special enrollment is extended only for select circumstances, and you may have a limited amount of time to choose the best Medicare Supplement plan in California and complete your application. For instance, you may lose your employer-sponsored health insurance when you retire. Your special enrollment period would start the day that your previous policy expires.
Medicare also offers something that other states don’t: the birthday rule. With this rule, you can sign up for a new health plan within 30 days of your birthday each year.
If you don’t qualify for special enrollment, the Medicare insurance company will consider your health history when determining your premium. They may also decline to offer you a policy for any reason.
While you’re looking into enrolling, you should talk to one of our licensed insurance agents about prescription drug plans through Medicare Part D. Part D offers prescription drug coverage so that you can save money on medication. It’s not a requirement, but you may be penalized later if you don’t sign up when you’re first eligible. Although these plans are sometimes included in Part C Medicare Advantage plans, they are never included in Medicare Supplements, whether you chose Plan A or Plan F.
Medicare Supplement Plans in California: Enrollment Statistics
- The five largest California counties include Los Angeles County, San Diego County, Orange County, Riverside County, and San Bernardino County.
- As of 2015, close to 500,000 California residents were enrolled in Medigap plans.
- In 2018, more than 40 percent of Medicare beneficiaries were enrolled in Medicare Advantage or Medicare supplement insurance plans in California.
- More than 3.5 million California residents were enrolled in Medicare Part A and Part B in 2018.
California Medicare Resources
- Guide to Medicare Supplement Insurance by the California Department of Insurance
- California Health Advocates for information on Medi-Cal and Medicare savings programs for those in San Francisco, Los Angeles or anywhere else across the state
- Medicare.gov for the federal Medicare website
Related Topics for Comparing Medicare Supplement Companies and Plans in Arkansas
My Medigap Plans is a rapidly growing resource for Medicare beneficiaries. We specialize in educating consumers on their options and guiding them through the process of plan selection. We work closely with some of the nations top rated carriers such as Aetna, Cigna and Mutual of Omaha. Compare our list of the 10 Best Medicare Supplement Insurance Companies or take a deeper look at the plans by reviewing our Medicare Supplement Plans Comparison Chart. Learn more or about Medicare Part D Prescription Drug plans, or request a Medicare Supplement Plan Quote.