All posts by Bernice Brewer

Medicare Supplement plans are plans that are designed to fill in the “gaps” in “original” Medicare. “Original” Medicare includes Medicare Part A (hospital inpatient) and Part B (outpatient/doctor). These plans are stable across companies – all companies are required to provide the same standardized benefits. This makes it very easy to understand the plans and how they work. Below are the top three things that must be considered when looking at Medicare Supplement plans @

Medicare Supplement plans (also called Medigap) are Federally-standardized. The plans all provide equal coverage for “like” plans. What this means is that a Plan F with one company is the exact same as a Plan F with another company. Because of this, it is important to compare the plans on the basis of monthly premium and company rating or reputation. The price being equal, it is preferable to be with a company that has a long track record of involvement in the senior insurance marketplace and/or a high financial strength rating.

Medigap plans can be used at any medical outlets nationwide, regardless of which company sells them. Many types of insurance are network-based; however, this does not apply to Medicare Supplement plans. Even some types of Medicare plans – Medicare Advantage plans – are network-based in most cases. Medigap plans give you the suppleness of using the plan anywhere in the country that takes Medicare. This suppleness, mainly for someone that travels, is one of the many reasons that these plans have become increasingly popular as a way to supplement Medicare coverage.

There is no variation in how quickly or how efficiently one company pays claims versus another. Because the plans are Federally-standardized and pay claims this “crossover” system, you can be assured that, regardless of the company, the claims are going to be paid in a timely manner and with minimal (usually no) involvement from the insured. Once you have a plan, you just need to present your plan identification card with your red, white and blue Medicare card when receiving services from a doctor or hospital.

Altogether, Medicare Supplement plans continue to be a viable option for those on Medicare, who wish to limit their exposure to out of pocket expenses. With only Medicare, you are subjected to paying approximately 20% of all medical costs. With a Medigap plan, however, you can greatly reduce or, with some plans, completely eliminate yours out of pocket costs.



  1. Who is eligible?

In all 50 states, a Medicare advantage plan will only be available to you, when you are already enrolled to Medicare part A or B. Without enrolling to basic Medicare, offered by Social Security, you won´t be eligible to purchase any additional health insurance.

  1. Who offers it?  We do so visit

If you have been wondering, where to get these advantage plans from, the answer is private health insurance companies. Advantage plans are not offered directly from Social Security, like what the case is with Medicare pans.

  1. Same, yet different

The Medicare advantage plans have been standardized and law orders that a benefit plan A, for example, offers the same benefits throughout the United States. And in fact, in 47 states you can move freely, known that your Medicare advantage plan will remain the same and will offer you the same benefits. Unless, you move to these three states: Wisconsin, Massachusetts and Minnesota. In these three states Medicare advantage plans have similarities, but are standardized differently

  1. The older you are, the higher the price

Health insurance companies have the right to set the price for your premium rate individually. One factor that affects the premium rate is age. Some health insurance companies base the premium rate on the age you are in at the time of your enrollment, while others increase the premium rate the older you get. It all depends on the health insurance company, really. Other factors that affect the premium rate cost are: zip code, gender and tobacco use. Those who use tobacco are known to pay up to 10% more per month for their premium rates, compared to those who don´t use this substance.

Medicare Advantage plans 2019

  1. Visit any doctor

When only enrolled to a Medicare part A or B, you need to watch out which doctor you are visiting. In these cases, you can only visit doctors who are part of the provider network. When enrolled to Medicare advantage plans, you can visit any doctor, as long as they accept Medicare. You won´t need to look at provider networks.

  1. Decide whenever you feel like it

You can decide to get a Medicare advantage plan whenever you feel like it, basically. Unlike Medicare part A and B, which have an annual enrollment period, you can decide to get that additional health insurance whenever you want. The only problem with this is, that the premium rates may and usually do change within a year, upwards.

  1. Timing saves you money

Medicare advantage plans are all about timing. Although you can enroll whenever you want, the best possible timing is to do so during your open enrollment period. This is a time that starts on the day of your 65th birthday and lasts for six months. The premium rate costs will be so low during this period, because the health insurance company is not allowed to base it on your health state. Also, you are guaranteed enrollment, as the health insurance company is not allowed to deny you either.


Preventive care is just as important as treatment care. Preventive care is the health care you get, that assists you in preventing injuries or certain conditions from occurring. If you get the right preventive health care, you will be able to have a better health state later on. Preventive care is also important for avoiding life-threatening conditions. Many conditions can only be healed if diagnoses early and the only way of getting an early diagnose is by getting preventive, annual check-ups!

This is a good enough reason to make sure that you use the health care services provided for a better condition prevention. Some of the health care services that have prevention purposes, are:

  • Blood pressure screening
  • Depression screening
  • Diabetes screening
  • HIV screening
  • Vaccines
  • Lung cancer screening
  • And much more!

Some of the prevention health services offered to women specifically, are:

  • Contraception
  • Anemia screening
  • Mammogram
  • Urinary tract infection screening
  • Cervical cancer screening
  • And much more!

There are preventive health care services available for children as well, such as:

  • Autism screening
  • Bilirubin level screening
  • Blood screening
  • Hearing screening
  • Vaccines
  • And much more!

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All these health care services are very beneficial and, in most cases, also extremely necessary. Why not take advantage of them? If the financial costs have been a bother to you, you might consider enrolling to a Medicare advantage plan. By getting a advantage plan, you will pay a less expensive premium rate each month, making it thereby possible for you to use these services throughout the year. For many, this is way more rentable than having to pay out of your own pocket after each visit. All 10 available Medicare advantage plans cover for the costs of preventive care and you are free to choose any of them!

When choosing the right advantage plan, keep in mind that there are other expenses that they cover too. It is best you choose one that covers exactly those expenses you have been paying most for out of your own pocket. It won´t be as helpful if you get a advantage plan that covers for travel insurance, if you know that you will be only traveling within the United States. In this case, you are paying for something that you´re not even using!

Prior to committing to a certain company, make sure to compare prices. Health insurance companies have their own criteria, when it comes to setting the price of your premium rate. Some will base it on the age you´re in at the time you enroll, some rate it on the area you live in and some will base it on your gender. There are statistics that show that women use less health care services throughout the year, which is why some health insurance companies offer the same benefit for a lower price to women than to men. Tobacco users need to keep in mind that this play a role in most insurance companies. As a smoker, you will be left paying more for a premium rate than a non-smoker.

Individuals who either qualify or are approaching the qualification age for Medicare would experience insurance agents persuading them to enroll for a Medicare Supplement Plan. Although these emails, calls, and direct mails will surely be full of juicy bargains, deals, and value added offers, caution and time is necessary.

As great as it is, Medicare is not a simple program. Insurance in the private sector is also complex issue. For this reason, time and thought is required. Whilst it can be annoying to have constant attention from agents, do not turn them away; instead, get enough information from them, collate them, and carefully examine each one.

You need to carefully think through every Medicare supplement plan offered to you so visit Hence, it is imperative not to sign up with the first coverage you receive in your mail box or inbox. It is perfectly fine to have an appointment with an agent, and discuss whatever they have to offer you, but your decision to sign up should be taken after you have considered multiple plans.

There are a good number of Medicare supplement plans that you need to consider carefully. The standard ones are labeled A through L, and they offer about the same coverage from one provider to another. The only major difference will be the rate of premiums. So, instead of choosing a company which has a good name, it will be better to work with one that feels better.

Unfortunately, some insurance companies are likely to charge higher premiums than they are permitted to. For this reason, every research about Medicare supplement plans should begin at the State Insurance Commission. At this place, the published rates can be found either through the website or through a personal visit. These differ from one State to another, as is organized by the Senior Health Insurance Information Program, (SHIIP). They also provide a breakdown of what is covered in each plan, while SHIIP also gives contact details of each company so they can be contacted directly.

The cost of course should be one consideration that should be borne in mind; nobody needs to over stretch themselves. The general health of each individual is also vital, while other more personal considerations also need to be well thought out.

It is important to also take a look at the flexibility of each policy as well. A general fact about life is that no one knows what the future holds, so it is never a good idea to enter into a plan which does not offer a great deal of benefits.

The possibility of switching plans in the future is also worth considering, as this will help with increased expenses, which many policies, at the lower level will certainly not permit.

Haven decided on what plan is right, it will be quite straightforward and simple to sign up to a Medicare supplement plan. It is an important plan to have in place as one gets older. Though there are a few challenges when deciding how to go about it, it is certainly a decision with benefits in the long term.



When a person wants to stay healthy you don’t always have to spend money to get there. There are many ways to accomplish this.

First off, a healthy diet is important. Each meal should include healthy proteins, grains, fruits and vegetables in moderate portions. Anything in excess is not good for anyone. Preparing these foods simply and not overcooked will keep the nutrients intact and be beneficial to the body. Processed foods should be avoided. There are too many chemicals in these foods that are not good for the health of our bodies. If you don’t know what the ingredients are don’t buy it. Simple, whole foods are the best.

Our bodies are mostly made up of water and we expel a lot of water every day. We need to replenish this water by drinking fluids at least every hour. It is too easy to get dehydrated and then the body’s systems will start to break down. Drinking while exercising is crucial. Having a Mutual of Omaha Medicare supplement will help pay expenses that Medicare Part A and B doesn’t.

Walking is an exercise that doesn’t cost anything. We do a lot of walking everyday just doing household chores. Taking a brisk walk outside on a nice day can have many beneficial effects. Besides enjoying nature, a brisk walk will increase our heart muscle and burn calories as well. Getting a pedometer will help you see how many steps you take each day. It is recommended to walk 10,000 steps a day. You may think you couldn’t possibly do that many steps, but you will be surprised how many you get in just walking around a grocery store. Doing any exercise three times a week will be very beneficial to your body.

Many people love music and dancing and there is nothing wrong putting on some music and dancing around your home. Twenty minutes is all you need to get your heart pumping and you even have fun doing it. Best part is it doesn’t costs anything.

Some people will be able to join a gym and even get a trainer. This is a luxury that some people can afford and they should take advantage of this. Three to four times a week will keep your body healthy.

Doing daily chores like washing clothes, dusting and vacuuming will get a lot of steps in and exercise your muscles as well. Even walking in place during the television commercials are a way to get in your exercise in your own home.

So do some kind of exercise every day to get and keep your body healthy.