Plan G is one of the most popular Medicare Supplement Plans out there, for good reason. While Plan N isn’t quite as popular, the plan covers a lot of the same costs as Plan G. Because of their similarity, it can be hard to figure out which plan is right for you. We’ll take you through all of the details here, so you can make an informed decision.
What is Plan G?
Plan G is a Medicare Supplement Plan that offers a lot of additional coverage. Like all Medicare Supplement Plans, Plan G covers most things left over by Original Medicare. It is one of the most comprehensive plans out there. Because it is so popular, you can usually find it for a competitive price.
What Does Plan G Cover?
Plan G covers the following:
- Part A Coinsurance
- Part B coinsurance
- Blood (first 3 pints)
- Part A hospice care
- Skilled Nursing Facility Care Coinsurance
- Part A Deductible
- Part B Excess Charges
- 80% for Foreign Travel Emergencies
- Find out: Is Eliquis Covered Under Medicare?
Who is Plan G Good For?
Plan G is especially useful for people who want comprehensive and reliable coverage but aren’t too sure about which providers they’ll be receiving care from, or are planning to move around. Plan G covers all Part B excess charges, which can be more unpredictable than standard fees like the Part B deductible.
What Are Part B Excess Charges?
Unlike deductibles, excess charges are not set at a specific amount for the year. Some doctors agree to accept “assignment”, which means that they have agreed to accept Medicare’s approved amount as their full payment.
If a doctor hasn’t accepted “Medicare Assignment”, then they can overcharge by up to 15%, and these fees will constitute the excess charges.
If you expect to be changing physicians or don’t know if your care will involve excess charges, then Plan G’s coverage can be a good fit for you, since you’ll always be covered. You can find out if your care is subject to excess charges by simply asking your physician if they accept “Medicare Assignment”.
Agent TipYou can check ahead of time if your provider accepts “Medicare Assignment” by calling them or checking online at medicare.gov
How Much Does Plan G Cost?
Although all supplement plans have standardized coverage, their prices can vary significantly throughout the country and depending on your age. However, you can expect Plan G premiums to range from between $100 to $175 per month, although prices lower and higher than this are also possible. Because there’s so much variety in pricing, make sure to check out the options in your area by calling us at 800-208-4974.
Supplement Plan N: The Basics
Plan N isn’t one of the plans you usually hear about, but that’s starting to change as Plan F starts to be phased out. Like Plan F and Plan G, Plan N is one of the supplement plans that offer a lot of coverage. However, it doesn’t provide quite as much coverage as Plan G, meaning that the premiums are usually lower.
What Does Plan N Cover?
Plan N covers the following:
- Part A Coinsurance
- Part B Coinsurance or Copayment
- Blood (First 3 pints)
- Part A hospice care coinsurance or copayment
- Skilled nursing facility coinsurance
- Part A deductible
- 80% for Foreign Travel Emergencies
Who is Plan N Best For?
You should consider Plan N if you want a comprehensive plan, but you aren’t too worried about excess charges. Excess charges are fees that you may have to pay out of pocket if your doctor charges more than the Medicare allowed amount.
If you know that your regular doctor doesn’t charge excess charges, and you don’t expect to have to change soon, then Plan N can be an excellent fit for you. The premiums are usually lower than many other comprehensive plans. This means that it can be worth it even if you do end up having some excess charges to pay each year.
How Much Does Plan N Cost?
All Medicare Supplement Plans will vary in price because they are sold by private insurance companies. However, on average, you can expect to pay somewhere between $65 and $175 for Plan N. Keep in mind that prices in your area could be higher than this, sometimes significantly. As always, it’s important to check out the prices in your area, and get as many quotes as you can to make sure you’re finding the best options possible.
Plan N Coinsurance and Copayment
In addition to the ordinary premium cost for Plan N, it also has its own copayment and coinsurance fees. This is important to understand because Plan N is the only supplement plan that uses this structure. With Plan N, you will be responsible for a copayment of up to $20 for office visits and up to $50 for emergency room visits that don’t result in an inpatient admission.
Keep Reading: Medicare Supplement Plans: Ultimate Guide
What Are The Main Differences Between Plan N and Plan G?
This chart illustrates the main difference in coverage between these plans:
|Benefits||Plan G||Plan N|
|Part A Coinsurance||Yes||Yes|
|Part B Coinsurance or Copayment||Yes||Yes*|
|Blood (first 3 pints)||Yes||Yes|
|Part A hospice care coinsurance or copayment||Yes||Yes|
|Skilled nursing facility care coinsurance||Yes||Yes|
|Part A deductible||Yes||Yes|
|Part B deductible||No||No|
|Part B excess charges||Yes||No|
|Foreign travel exchange (up to plan limits)||80%||80%|
As you can see, the only real difference between these two plans as far as coverage goes is the excess charges and copayments. If your doctor does not accept Medicare Assignment then you may have an excess charge. Simply put, Plan G will pay this cost for you, but with Plan N, you have to pay it out of pocket.
Copayments for Plan N
As mentioned above, Plan N has its’ own copayment and coinsurance, which is unlike most supplement plans. With Plan N, you will have to pay a copayment of up to $20 for office visits and up to $50 for emergency room visits, not resulting in an inpatient admission. With Plan G, you have none of these additional fees.
Read More: Do Medigap Plans Cover Prescriptions?
So, Which Plan is Better?
As usual, this depends on your needs and how expensive these plans are in your area. If you are worried about excess charges and copayments, then Plan G will take care of those worries nicely. On the other hand, if excess charges don’t trouble you and you want lower premiums, then Plan N allows you to stay covered at a lower overall cost.
Related Content: Medicare Supplement Plan D: An alternative to Plan N?
Where to Go Next?
As always, it’s essential to look at the details with Medicare Supplement Plans. If you want to figure out more about which plans are offered in your area, contact us at 800-208-4974.
We are entirely independent of any insurance company, so we’re able to focus on your needs, and make sure you find the best coverage possible.
Alex Wender is the founder and CEO of Bluewave Insurance. He has been blogging about Medicare-related topics since 2010. Since then, he and his agency have helped thousands of people across the country choose the right Medicare to fit their needs.