According to Merriam-Webster something that is supplemental is a thing that supplements, or “completes or makes and addition” to a thing that lacking. Medicare Supplemental insurance does exactly that. It completes what is lacking in the insurance that is offered by Medicare.
If you should be turning 65, or if you have been disabled for 24 months (receiving disability advantages from Social Security), you most likely qualify for Medicare (the government run medical health insurance program for the disabled and older people). The problem is, Medicare doesn’t buy all your medical care costs. Following are a number of the costs not covered by Original Medicare (Medicare alone):
1. Your Part A Deductible
In 2010, the deductible for Medicare Part A (in-patient hospital insurance) is $1,100. This deductible relates to each “benefit period” which is 60 days in length. Here is an example:
Martha did not need Medicare Supplemental insurance and she’d to enter a healthcare facility for 4 days because she was having some chest apply for medicare online pains and her doctor wanted to perform a procedure to remove some arterial blockage. Before the bills were paid, Martha had to pay $1,100 as a deductible.
61 days after Martha was hospitalized, she’d to come back to a healthcare facility for another sickness. Because her 60 day benefit period had passed, she’d to pay another $1,100 deductible.
2. Your Part B Deductible
The Part B deductible relates to “out-patient” expenses (like visits along with your doctor). This deductible is $155 per year. Because Martha saw her doctor before he admitted her to a healthcare facility, in a healthcare facility, she also had to pay this deductible, plus 20% of her doctor’s fees. Martha’s doctor ordered some tests, such as for example an MRI and an EKG. When he didn’t like what he saw, he sent her to visit a cardiologist. She also had to pay 20% of his fee.
3. Your Part B Coinsurance
Medicare is actually an 80/20 plan. What this means is that Medicare pays 80% of one’s out-patient expenses and you spend 20%. In this case, Martha had to pay 20% of the doctor’s bills (including the specialists she saw) and 20% of the fee for many of her diagnostic tests, including the MRI she received before she was hospitalized.
In Martha’s case, her total bill with this incident was over $2,400, because she did not need a Supplemental insurance policy. If Martha had Medicare Supplemental insurance, and specifically a Medicare Supplement Plan F, she’d not need had to fund some of these costs. Besides her Part B premium ($110.50 per month in 2010), and her Medicare Supplement premiums (in Martha’s case, it would have been $154 per month), all of Martha’s deductibles and co-insurance would have been paid by the insurance company.