Medicare Advantage and Medigap (Medicare Supplement) are two popular options for those seeking additional healthcare coverage beyond Medicare Parts A and B. While Medicare Advantage can provide many benefits, some individuals may find it more beneficial to switch to a Medigap plan. In today’s blog, the South Florida Medicare agents at Medicare Sharks will share some of the reasons you might make the switch, and the steps necessary to make the transition as smooth as possible!
Switching From Medicare Advantage to Medigap: What You Need To Know
Reasons You Might Switch
There are several reasons why you might consider switching from a Medicare Advantage plan to a Medigap policy. These include:
You want more freedom to choose your healthcare providers.
You aren’t satisfied with your current coverage and benefits.
You’re moving out of the service area of your current Medicare Advantage plan.
Waiting for a Valid Election Period
If you have decided to switch from a Medicare Advantage plan to a Medigap policy, it’s important to do so during a valid election period. You can switch during the Annual Enrollment Period (AEP) from October 15th to December 7th of each year. You may also be eligible to switch during a Special Enrollment Period (SEP) if you meet certain criteria, such as moving out of your plan’s service area or losing your employer-sponsored coverage.
Why Approval for Medigap Isn’t Guaranteed
Unfortunately, approval for Medigap coverage isn’t guaranteed, especially outside of the initial enrollment period when you first turn 65 or enroll in Medicare Part B. In some cases, insurance companies may deny coverage if you have pre-existing conditions that require frequent medical care or if you have a history of serious illnesses. That’s why it’s important to work with a Medicare agent who can help you shop around and compare policies before making a decision.
Planning Your New Coverage Dates
If you do decide to switch to a Medigap plan, it’s important to plan your new coverage dates carefully. In most cases, you will need to cancel your Medicare Advantage coverage before your new Medigap policy can take effect. Be sure to do this before the start date of your new policy to avoid any gaps in coverage. It’s also important to note that if you have prescription drug coverage through your Medicare Advantage plan, you will need to enroll in a separate Part D plan when you switch to a Medigap policy.