ARTICLE: The Checklist You Need for Choosing a Medicare Advantage Plan

The Checklist You Need for Choosing a Medicare Advantage Plan

When choosing a Medicare Advantage insurance plan, do you know what can be important to keep in mind? First, you should check out what type of coverage may be offered in the three different areas that the typical plan encompasses. Second, you should take a close look at whether any extra services are covered. Third, make sure you understand the plan structure, what your costs will be, and which practitioners are in-network plan participants.

A Medicare Advantage plan typically includes Medicare Part A, hospital insurance; Part B, medical health insurance; and also Part D, prescription drug coverage. Instead of purchasing each part separately, they are all bundled together into one plan, which can be more cost effective than purchasing them a la carte. The specific plan components in each part that are rolled into a Medicare Advantage plan, however, might be different than the components in the stand-alone plan. It can be, therefore, important to examine the coverage offered very closely.

One of the major benefits of a Medicare Advantage plan can be the extra coverage offered in addition to the major components above. For example, many plans offer vision, hearing, and dental coverage, in addition to basic medical coverage. Some offer alternative wellness coverage for use in chiropractic or acupuncture services, or general everyday health options like reimbursement for a gym membership or yoga classes. When choosing a Medicare Advantage plan, it can be a good idea to consider what services you personally need or would make use of if offered and run through that checklist and compare it against each plan available. 

Furthermore, cost may always be an important consideration on your checklist when choosing an insurance plan. The typical Medicare Advantage plan may be more cost effective than its comparable unbundled components. Look closely, however, at what your monthly premium will cost both for the overall plan and for the separate Part B premium. In addition, take a look at which physicians participate as in-network providers; many Medicare Advantage plans require you to use an in-network practitioner. If the cost is significantly lower, it may make sense for you, but you should be aware from the outset if your options for care providers will be more limited.

For further assistance navigating Medicare Advantage, please feel free to reach out to our office to schedule a time to meet.

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We at Roth Elder Law, PLLC, believe in providing services in a way that clients can easily understand and meaningfully participate in designing and maintaining their estate plan for their loved ones, as well as be assured that their plan will be administered according to their wishes.