Secondary health insurance is coverage you can buy separately from your Medicare coverage. It helps cover you for care and services that Medicare does not. This secondary insurance could be a Medicare Supplement (Medigap), vision plan, dental plan, or a hospital indemnity plan, to name a few.
Medicare Supplement Insurance
Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap) helps fill "gaps" in Original Medicare, and is sold by private companies. It’s a great option to add to your existing Medicare Part A and B, Original Medicare pays for much, but not all, of the cost for covered health care services and supplies. A Medicare Supplement Insurance policy helps cover some out-of-pocket costs that Part A and Part B may leave you with. Health care costs, like:
Some Medicare Supplement policies also cover services that Original Medicare doesn't cover, like medical care when you travel outside the U.S. If you have Original Medicare and you buy a Medicare Supplement policy, here's what happens:
- Medicare will pay its share of the Medicare-approved amount for covered health care costs.
- Then, your Medicare Supplement policy pays its share.
These plans don’t provide stand-alone coverage; you need to remain enrolled in Part A and Part B for your hospital and medical coverage. If you need prescription drug coverage, you’d need to enroll in a stand-alone Medicare Prescription Drug Plan.
Monthly premiums will vary depending on your age, company, and location. Typically ranging from $100 to $300. You can contact one of our agents for a customized quote or see select quotes by using an online rating tool like our medicareful page.
Even though a Medicare supplement fills in the "gaps" in Original Medicare you'll still be exposed to other coverage gaps that Medicare does not offer any coverage. Ancillary plans like dental, vision and Hospital Indemnity insurance are all important too.
Medicare doesn't cover most dental care, dental procedures, or supplies, like cleanings, fillings, tooth extractions, dentures, dental plates, or other dental devices. If you need to have emergency or complicated dental procedures Medicare part A will pay for certain dental services only if you are in the hospital.
A standalone dental plan from a private insurance company can help fill the need for dental care. Standalone dental plans usually include deductibles, copays, and coinsurance.
Basic dental plans may offer you coverage for preventive dental care with lower monthly premiums. Other plans may provide more dental coverage for a little higher premium. Monthly premiums can start as low $35.00.
Dental insurance makes dental care more affordable! With a focus on prevention, dental insurance typically covers professional services like routine check-ups, cleanings and exams at 100%. This helps reduce out-of-pocket costs, so you pay less for the dental care you need.
When shopping for dental insurance there are a number of factors to consider in order to choose the best plan for you and your family. First, evaluate your individual needs and understand your budget. Then, take a look at the different kinds of dental plans available in your area and what’s covered in each plan. You will also want to look at network size and applicable restrictions.
Medicare doesn’t cover eye exams (sometimes called “eye refractions”) for eyeglasses or contact lenses. With just Medicare you'll pay 100% for eye exams for eyeglasses or contact lenses.
Vision insurance is designed to help you cover and budget for ongoing vision care expenses like routine eye exams, prescription glasses and contact lenses. You can buy vision plans with a dental plan.
The cost of vision insurance depends on various factors, but monthly premiums can range from $10-$30 per person. Policies that charge higher monthly premiums come with reduced costs for care. The catch is that all policies have some coinsurance costs, copays and limits on coverage.
So, what should you look for with vision insurance?
- Annual benefits: Ensure your vision plan covers all yearly benefits. For instance, some plans will offer 1 eye exam and glasses every 2 years while others offer an exam annually and frames every 2 years. Plan prices may be unusually low, so check carefully.
- Doctor network: Look for a provider with a large network of independent doctors. Be on the lookout for carriers that promote large numbers by highlighting access points instead of locations.
- Frame allowance: Your vision plan should provide a generous allowance for frames. Other plans offer a higher allowance for specific frame brands and reduced coverage for frames outside these brands.
- Lens enhancements: Make sure you’re covered if you wear progressive lenses.
- Enrollment fees: Beware of hidden fees in vision coverage. Many plans disguise a high enrollment fee with a lower monthly fee when signing up — making the plan more expensive.
Hospital Indemnity Insurance
Hospital indemnity insurance is a supplemental insurance plan designed to pay for the costs of a hospital admission that is not covered by Medicare.
The Part B benefit period deductible for 2021 is $1,484. A benefit period begins when you enter the hospital and ends when you haven’t received any inpatient hospital services for 60 consecutive days. If you re-enter the hospital the day after your benefit period ends, you’re responsible for the first $1,484 of charges again.
Part A also charges coinsurance if your hospital stay lasts more than 60 days.
Hospital indemnity insurance has become increasingly popular as hospitalization costs have soared. this type of insurance provides flexible supplemental coverage to Medicare, and Medicare Advantage plans.
These plans are NOT health insurance policies such as Major Medical or Medicare plans, but a cash benefit that is either paid as a lump sum or daily benefit. There’s generally no deductible or limited provider network, and benefits can be spent in whatever way you choose, from medical bills to household expenses.
The monthly cost of a hospital indemnity plan will depend on your plan choice, age, gender, and possibly your tobacco use. For example, plans that offer fewer benefits start at just under $7 per month. Plans that offer a wider range of benefits can vary anywhere from $19 up to $463 per month.
Depending on what Medicare plan(s) you have, ancillary insurance products might be necessary to provide you with the comprehensive coverage and peace of mind you need.
We have insurance agents available who can help you select from the available Medicare Supplement insurance as well as other ancillary products. Speak with a licensed & local agent today by calling 833-265-9655 or contact us here.