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What is the best Medicare Supplement plan in New Jersey?

We frequently hear this question.  There is no one size fits all when it comes to Medicare Supplement Plans in Bergen County, New Jersey.  Every situation is unique, but there are a few major considerations that will lead you to the best Medigap plan for your specific needs.

Since Medigap Plan F is no longer available, the most popular plan is Medigap Plan G. Plan G covers all the costs that Medicare does not cover, except the Part B deductible.  Since Plan G has no co-pays, it works well for people who have several doctor’s office visits in a year.

Medigap Plan N is also another great Medicare Supplement option, but again it depends on how often you go to the doctor. Medigap Plan N has the same Part B deductible, but also has up to $20 co-pays for office visits and $50 for the emergency room.  Plan N will not cover any Medicare excess charges that may arise.  Excess charges are very rare and limited to 15% in most states.

The difference in the New Jersey premiums between Medigap Plan G and Plan N, at age 65, is approximately $30-$50 a month depending on the insurance company.  When making the decision between these two Medigap Plans, it is crucial to consider your long-term healthcare needs. If you have a condition which requires physical therapy or any recurring doctor’s visits, it can be less expensive to go with Plan G because there are no co-pays. 

Furthermore, it is important to know that there are no guarantees you can change your Medicare Supplement Plan later.  If you decide to switch Medigap plans after your initial enrollment into Medicare, you will be subject to medical underwriting (except in New York and Connecticut).  Medical underwriting consists of health questions and a medication check, which can disqualify you from changing plans. It is critical to know that your Medigap decision could be permanent.

Another thing to consider when choosing an insurance company for your Medicare Supplement coverage is the extra, value-added benefits that some insurance companies offer. Several insurance companies do offer free gym membership programs as well as discounts on dental and vision.  A few companies offer 24-hour nurse lines where you can call a registered nurse with any questions. These programs are extra benefits added to the supplement plan at no cost to you.  Not all insurance companies offer these extra benefits.

Since all the Medigap plans are standardized by letter, there are no differences in the coverage or network for a given plan.  The only thing that will differ between companies is the price increases over time. I have found that the major insurance companies do usually have the best experience for price increases. Since they insure the most people, the claims are more spread out, and they can usually keep the price increases lower.

Every individual’s healthcare needs are unique. When deciding on your Medigap coverage, make sure you consider your current health needs as well as the future. If you have any questions, do not hesitate to reach out to us.

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