In 2006, only 16 percent of Medicare recipients were enrolled in Medicare Advantage plans. A mere 10 years later, that number has nearly double. 31 percent of Medicare beneficiaries have enrolled in Medicare Advantage plans.
Are you considering enrolling in a Medicare Advantage plan that enhances your coverage? Before you make the change, make sure you know exactly what to expect – read these four facts on Medicare Advantage Plans.
- You Still Have Medicare Protections
Even though your plan is serviced and managed by a private health insurance company, you retain all of the rights and protections that are afforded to you under Medicare since technically you are still in the Medicare program. This means that you have a right to choose health providers covered by your plan, be informed as to how your doctor is paid, file complaints and get straightforward coverage information before obtaining services.
- You Must Live in a Region Covered by Your Service Plan
You can’t pick just any Medicare Advantage plan. While Medicare is accepted at a vast majority of hospitals and healthcare provider offices, a Medicare Advantage plan will most likely have a narrower coverage network. You should make sure that the types of specialists you would like to visit under your new coverage are close by. Also, keep in mind that the providers within this network may change from year to year.
- You Have to Follow the Plan’s Rules to Get Coverage
In order to have certain services covered, you have to follow the plan’s exact procedure for requests and approvals. You may need a referral to see a specialist. Stay aware of the fact that private insurance companies operate differently than traditional Medicare.
- There Is a Cap on Out-of-Pocket Costs
If you’ve been enrolled in original Medicare Part A and B, you know that there are no annual limits on how much you pay out-of-pocket for care. This isn’t the case with Medicare Advantage plans and it’s most likely a welcome change. The cap on out-of-pocket expenses for 2016 Medicare Advantage plans is $6,700. If you pay thousands per year on expensive treatments, upgrading your plan is a way to control your annual costs and know what to expect when budgeting for your own healthcare.
Are you interested in learning more about the types of plans that will fit your coverage needs? Talk to My Senior Health Plan today for an in-depth, informative comparison.