Best Medicare Advantage Plans 2020
Medicare Advantage gives seniors a way to cover many costs that they may have trouble paying for on their own otherwise. The best Medicare Advantage plans 2020 has to offer will not just save people money on their healthcare, but they will also offer peace of mind about unexpected health problems or medical emergencies. As you grow older, you may fear the kind of medical issues that you are dealing with and the unexpected ways that they can rear their head. It’s no wonder that many seniors seek out high coverage plans like Medicare Advantage to calm their nerves and give them some comfort against the inevitable medical problems they will face.
How Medicare Advantage can Help You
Are you familiar with Medicare Advantage, what these plans cover and how these plans provide help for seniors? If not, then we want to share with you some of the basics of how these plans work and what medical expenses they can cover for you.
Firs to all, you need to understand a few simple facts about Advantage plans. They are sold privately, and insurance companies like Aetna, Mutual of Omaha, Cigna and others have some freedom as to how they price the plans and what kind of plans they offer. They have to follow Medicare’s rules for these plans and offer the basic coverage that is required to be present in any Advantage plan, but there is some leeway given. That means that there are a wide variety of Advantage plans to pick from.
You also have to realize that Medicare Advantage can serve as a substitute or replacement for Medicare’s Original plan. Advantage coverage is going to take care of almost all the same expenses as that original plan. It covers you for most Part A and part B expenses, covering laboratory testing, x-rays, some prescription drugs, hospital stays, nursing care, blood use, and more. It won’t cover the hospice care costs, but otherwise it is a perfect replica of Original Medicare. However, the Advantage plan doesn’t stop at just offering Original Medicare coverage for its subscribers. It also covers them for urgently needed care and emergency medical services.
All of this is simply the basic coverage included in every Advantage plan, though. Many of the insurance companies that sell these plans add extra coverage to their Advantage plans. We told you they have some freedom with these plans, and they can offer different versions of Advantage plans. Many insurers offer both basic Advantage plans and ones that have more coverage than that. They may add in coverage for prescription drugs under the Medicare Part D plan, and they may also cover you for checkups and various expenses related to checkups.
The various Advantage plans can differ quite a bit from one another, and it is not uncommon to find an insurance company offering about a dozen different versions of these plans that they offer will vary from one area to the next. Their customers have different needs in various places around the country, so don’t expect the same plans to be available at the same price if you move to a new state or county.
Advantage plans can help seniors by covering expenses they may not be able to take care of for themselves. The best Advantage plan will cover you in such a way that your medical expenses will decrease and you will be able to afford the coverage you are getting. You can also enjoy peace of mind with the right plan, as you won’t need to worry about whether you will be covered for medical care that you need. You are also more likely to go for medical treatment when the need arises when you have the right kind of coverage plan. People who are not adequately covered or who don’t feel confident in their coverage will be less likely to go for treatment unless it is an emergency. Even then, they may be concerned about the expenses and try to take care of themselves at home to avoid the costs assorted with professional medical treatment.
It can be very expensive to get the treatment you need, especially as you get older and your medical needs tend to increase. Instead of avoiding medical care as much as possible, you can rest easy having relevant medical services covered by a suitable insurance plan.
Advantage Plans Are limited by a Network
All Medicare Advantage plans are listed with their network option. For instance, you may be looking through a list of plans from a specific insurance company and see names for the plans like Medicare Advantage HMO or Medicare Advantage PPO. Those letters are an acronym that denotes the kind of network coverage you will enjoy.
Every Advantage plan is limited by the network of the insurance company. The network would include every hospital, doctor’s office and every other medical facility that has agreed to the coverage plans of that specific insurance company. You always know that you are covered fully according to your plan if you go to a network facility for treatment. This network can include pharmacies and clinics as well, and when you decide to go outside the network for medical services, your coverage is not as certain.
The most common network type option that Advantage plans subscribers will go with is the HMO. That’s partly because it’s cheap and party because it’s simple. It only covers you on the network. If you go outside the network for treatment, it does not cover you at all. That keeps things very simple and easy to understand.
The PPO plan types the other major option. This is favored by people who travel a lot and those who live in areas of the country where there are few medical facilities. PPO plans will cover you fully on the network as well, but the big difference between them and HMO plans is that PPO plans will cover you outside the network too. The hitch is that they only cover you partially outside of your insurer’s network and that they cost more than HMOs. You are getting more coverage with this kind of plan, so you should expect to have to pay more.
Which of these are the best Medicare Advantage plans 2020 has to offer? You will have to look at the insurer’s network and your local area to determine that. If you live in an area of the country where the prospective insurer has a very limited network and you will have trouble getting medical services at a facility that is covered under your plan, then you should probably go with a PPO plan. If you live in a densely populated area with lots of choices for medical treatment facilities that are on the prospective insurer’s network, then an HMO seems like the obvious choice.
You also have to take into account your travel habits, as if you travel often, you may have trouble getting treatment at a network facility, depending on where you are going. Think about these issues as you try to choose the best plan for your needs, and keep in mind that every insurance company has a different network. Find out about their networks and how they apply to where you live before you sign up for any Advantage plan with any insurance company.
One more thing to keep in mind about network coverage and these plan types is that if you have an HMO and you experience a medical emergency that requires you to be taken to a medical facility that is not on the network, you will receive partial coverage, in most instances. This protects you against having to pay out a lot of money when you had no other choice as to where you went for treatment.
Which Advantage Plan Should You Choose?
You’ll want to pick an advantage plan that saves you money. While a high coverage plan could give you some peace of mind, it ultimately does not make sense to choose an insurance plan that is not cutting your healthcare costs for you in some way. Compare the cost of the plans to what you pay out of pocket and consider if it is cheaper to just pay for those things yourself, choose a different plan entirely or go with one of the Advantage plans.
You will need to compare some prices between he plans. You want to ensure that you are getting a good deal, and the only way to effectively do that is to look at several quotes for different advantage plans. You can use price comparison services online for free to do that quickly and effectively. The more quotes you source, the better off you are going to be, as you will be able to find a cheap plan more easily.
Keep in mind that prices on these plans are set by private insurance companies that sell them and the prices do change from time to time. You should keep checking the prices on comparison websites to ensure that you are getting accurate information and that your information is up to date. You can use multiple comparison websites to find as many quotes as possible.
Medicare Advantage plans offer different network options, which we covered already, but you want to be sure you choose one that works for where you live and your lifestyle. Finding the best Advantage plan is about finding suitable coverage, and if the network for a plan doesn’t include anything in your local area, then you may want to find a different insurance company with a different network.
Finding the right Advantage plan is also about finding the most suitable coverage. You need to examine your medical status and what kind of expenses you are paying and you can expect to pay in the near future. Figure out what medical treatments are tough for you to pay on your own or what would be cheaper to pay for if it were covered by an insurance plan.
Advantage plans offer lots of different coverage option. We listed these already, and you should look at what’s available and how they apply to you. It’s possible that you won’t find any Advantage plan coverage that seems to fit you. In that case, you may want to look at Medicare Supplement plans. These offer coverage for all those medical expenses that relate to Original Medicare (Medicare Part A and Part B) but that are not covered by Original Medicare.
Unlike Medicare Advantage which replaces Original Medicare, Supplement plans work alongside that Original Medicare insurance plan. They fill in coverage gaps for you, covering expenses that you would be left paying on your own. They can cover you for deductibles, excess charges, copayments, blood, and more, and there are 10 distinct plans to pick from, each with their own set coverage.
Medicare Supplement plans are mostly available to anyone who is eligible for Medicare, but Plan F and Plan C from the Supplement plans line-up are only available to current Medicare Supplement subscribers. Those who could renew their Plan C and Plan F coverage could pick those plans, but everyone else has to choose one of the other eight plans due to new legislation.
Medicare Supplements could be a good alternative for you and offer the kind of coverage you need. If not, then take time to look at Medicare Advantage. We hope you can find a plan that suits you well. The best plan for you is out there, but you will have to do some look to find it. You can start now and be ready at the end of 2019 to sign up for a 2020 plan. Once you have done the research and compared the options available to you, you should know what the best Medicare Advantage plans 2020 has to offer will be. You should be able to settle on one that fits you well and that you can afford to keep for a full year’s term. We hope this guide is some help in finding the right plan for you.