How Medigap plans work in Arizona
There are 10 standardized Medigap plans available in 47 states, each of them labeled with a letter (such as A, B, C, D, F, G, K, L, M, and N), with plans of the same letter offering the same benefits. Massachusetts, Minnesota, and Wisconsin offer Medicare Supplement plans that differ from the 10 standardized plans available in Arizona and the rest of the country.
Medicare beneficiaries in Arizona are generally eligible to sign up for Medigap plans once they are enrolled in Original Medicare, Part A and Part B.
The best time to buy a Medicare Supplement plan is during your Medigap Open Enrollment Period. This six-month period starts the first day a beneficiary is age 65 or older and is also enrolled in Medicare Part B. During this time, Medicare beneficiaries in Arizona have “guaranteed-issue rights,” meaning they can sign up for any Medicare Supplement plan available in their area, with the Medigap insurance company of their choosing, without being denied coverage or charged higher premiums because of their health status.
Keep in mind that some insurance companies may still require waiting periods before covering pre-existing conditions. If you’re looking to enroll in a Medigap policy outside of this period, you can do so at any time. However, unless you’re eligible for guaranteed-issue rights, you may be denied coverage or charged more for his or her insurance policy. You may be able to switch or enroll in Medicare Supplement plans in certain situations with guaranteed issue; for example, if your Medigap insurance company goes bankrupt or misled you.
In Arizona and the rest of the United States, Medigap plans do not offer prescription drug coverage, so you may want to enroll in a stand-alone Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plan to receive coverage for prescription drug expenses. Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plans in Arizona are available through Medicare-approved private insurance companies and, like Medicare Supplement insurance, work alongside Original Medicare.
Be aware that even if you sign up for a Medigap plan in Arizona, you must remain enrolled in Original Medicare, Part A and Part B, and go on paying your Medicare Part B premium, to keep your health insurance coverage. Medigap plans are meant to supplement– not replace– Original Medicare. You’ll still get your hospital and medical coverage through Original Medicare.
Even though medicare plans in arizona with the same letter designation don’t vary in coverage or benefits, each independent insurance company offering Medicare Supplement plans is allowed to determine its own monthly premium structure. Some Medigap plans charge all members the same premium, while other plans depend on your age when you enroll and go up as you get older. Because costs may vary by insurance company and location, this means that a resident of Tucson in Pima County may pay more or less than a resident of Phoenix in Maricopa County for an identical
Medicare Supplement plan. It can be to your advantage to compare all Medicare Supplement plans in Arizona available to you, and then make your final choice based on your personal budget and health requirements.
With so many Medicare Supplement plan options available in Arizona, it’s important that you understand what each plan has to offer before making your choice. To get help selecting the plan that works for your personal health needs, feel free to start browsing coverage options in your area using the plan finder tool on this page. Or, if you have questions about finding coverage that may work for your needs, call to speak with a licensed insurance agent today.