Medicare in Florida
In the state of Florida, you may expect to pay more for your standardized Medicare Supplement Plan. The Florida rates tend to be among the highest in the nation.
With its senior population, mild climate, easy lifestyle, vibrant and retirement communities, and lower housing costs and taxes, Florida remains attractive to senior citizens. Medicare is an important part of their retirement planning and lifestyle.
Florida leads the nation in the percentage of citizens 65 and older. Currently, Florida’s Senior population is nearly 5 million. Medicare Beneficiaries in Florida number over 4.5 million.
Medical Expenses Increase With Age
Since medical expenses increase as we get older, a significant group of aging people will impact the cost of doing business for an insurance company that is marketing Medicare supplement plans to that group. The higher claims cost has caused some companies to decide not to offer expensive plans in Florida. This limits the choices for seniors and causes premiums to be more expensive.
Another factor affecting Florida supplement rates are some of the insurance regulations in the state. These tend to be good for the consumer, but can also cause higher rates. Finding out which supplement plan is best for you can be complex and daunting. South Florida Medicare Specialists have the experience to offer the advice relating to the most suitable plans for your age and situation.
Florida Medicare: Issue Age vs. Attained Age
All Medicare Supplement Plans in Florida are sold as “issue age” vs. “attained age”. With issue age pricing, your premium depends on your age when you purchase the policy. Attained age plans increase based on your age as you get older, but tend to be significant. Issue age policies do not increase based on age but are connected to increases in Medicare deductibles and other cost-sharing. This has much less impact on the cost of the plan, resulting in predictable costs going forward.
The Medicare Mandate in Florida
All insurance companies wanting to market Medicare supplements in Florida are mandated by the state to have plans available to people who qualify for Medicare under the age of 65. These are beneficiaries who typically have been on SS disability for 24 months. It gives them the ability to secure protection against medical costs and increased quality of care. It also creates a higher risk and greater cost group of insured. South Florida Medicare Specialists can help you to choose the best plan based on your needs.
Florida Seniors and Medigap Plans
There are factors contributing to the higher cost for Medigap plans in Florida. If you are a Florida Senior you owe it to yourself to be proactive and compare plans and prices so that you can be confident that you are getting the most bang for your health care dollar and that you have the right coverage.
Medicare supplement plans come in a variety of forms, and are sold by private insurance companies. South Florida Medicare Specialists offers you personal service with free at home or in-office consultation.
The Current Medicare Plans
Current plans are identified by letters, and include plans A, B, C, D, F, Select F, G, K, L, M, and N. An important note is that supplement plans work together with original medicare. These plans essentially help cover some or all of the costs that Medicare does not cover, including deductibles, coinsurance, and copays. Your deductible is the amount of medical cost you are responsible for before the insurance kicks in. There are certain co-pays you may be responsible for in the event of an extended hospital stay. There is also a Part B deductible which you are responsible for before Medicare will pay anything towards your physician or outpatient costs. Moreover, your share of Part B cost is 20% for any covered procedure. As you can see, your shared cost under Medicare alone can add up considerably.
A supplement plan can offer you some relief from these costs. Using a popular plan’s examples, the following applies:
- Plans B, C, D, F, G, and N will cover that Part A deductible entirely.
- Plans K, L, and M will cover a portion of the Part A deductible.
- Plans C and F will cover the Part B deductible entirely.
- Plans A, B, C, D, F, G, and M will cover the Part B coinsurance entirely.
- Plans K, L, and N may have some limitations on Part B coinsurance. Are you confused yet?
It’s important to remember that only a licensed insurance agent can clearly explain your choices.
Here are some questions you should ask your agent:
- Do I really need a supplement plan?
- How much will it cost?
- Is there a network of doctors or hospitals I am restricted to?
- If I move to another state, can I keep my supplement plan?
- Are there any forms to fill out at the time of service?
- What if my doctor does not accept Medicare, am I still covered?
- Am I covered out of the country?
- When can I join a plan?
- Can I change to a different plan at any time?
- Does my supplement plan cover prescription medications?
When looking for answers to these questions, make sure that the advice comes from a Medicare-approved agent. Also, look for a company that has a well-established record with Medicare.
What Medicare Does For You
There are three basic kinds of Florida Medicare plans. There is the Advantage plan, Medigap plan, and Standard Medicare plan. Which one you choose depends on your specific health care needs. The consultants at South Florida Medicare Specialists can help you to make the best decision.
If you already have Medicare, you can choose from several plans. You can look at a brochure or online to see the different options. In general, the most expensive plan is the Medicare Supplement Plan. This is because it adds a premium that you’ll pay on top of what you already pay.
Once you’ve decided on which plan you’d like to go with, you can decide how you’ll pay for it. In most cases, you’ll be able to choose from two payment methods. The first is a monthly installment. This is where you make a regular monthly payment toward the cost of your Medicare. Each month, you’ll be given a total amount to send in.
By now you can see that choosing the right plan is not an easy decision. That’s why South Florida Medicare Specialists can help. We have an experienced team that will listen carefully to your specific needs and we will guide you to make the best health insurance decisions. Helping you in the best ways possible is what we do.