Changes to Medicare Supplement Plan F in 2020
Summary: Medicare Supplement Plan F has extensive coverage. However, this plan won’t be available to new Medicare beneficiaries starting January 1, 2020. If you already have the plan, you can keep it.
Medicare Supplement Plan F: what’s currently covered
Medicare Supplement plans work with Original Medicare to cover certain out-of-pocket costs. There are 10 plan types available, including Medicare Supplement Plan F. Each plan is standardized across each letter type. So, for example, every Medicare Supplement Plan F sold in your state has the same basic benefits, no matter where you buy it.
Medicare Supplement Plan F covers a wide range of Medicare costs. This chart lists covered benefits. The benefits marked as “Yes” are 100% covered by Medicare Supplement Plan F. The exception is the foreign travel coverage benefit, which is covered 80%.
Medicare Supplement Plan F Benefits
|Is this covered?|
|Part A coinsurance and hospital costs for up to an extra year after Medicare coverage is used up||Yes|
|Part B coinsurance or copayment||Yes|
|First 3 pints of blood||Yes|
|Part A hospice care copayment or coinsurance||Yes|
|Skilled nursing facility coinsurance||Yes|
|Part A deductible||Yes|
|Part B deductible||Yes|
|Part B excess charges||Yes|
|Overseas travel coverage (up to plan limits)||80%|
Medicare Supplement Plan F also includes a high-deductible version. This option covers the same benefits as the standard Medicare Supplement Plan F. However, with the high-deductible version, you pay for Medicare-covered costs until you reach the deductible amount (which varies from year to year). After you reach the plan deductible, the Medicare Supplement Plan F starts to pay for covered costs.
Medicare Supplement Plan F: changes in 2020
New rules will affect Medicare Supplement plans in 2020, including Medicare Supplement Plan F. Beginning January 1, 2020, Medicare Supplement plans that cover the Part B deductible will no longer be offered to new Medicare enrollees. This applies whether you qualified for Medicare because of age, end-stage renal disease, or disability.
These changes to Medicare Supplement insurance will affect Medicare Supplement Plans F and C, which both cover the Part B deductible.
If you’ll be eligible for Medicare before January 1, 2020, you may still be able to buy Medicare Supplement Plan F or Plan C if you’re not yet enrolled. Keep in mind that plan availability varies by state and location.
What if I already have Medicare Supplement Plan F?
The good news is that if you’re already enrolled in a Medicare Supplement Plan F or Plan C, you can keep your current coverage. This applies whether you have the standard Medicare Supplement Plan F or the high-deductible version.
As mentioned, the new changes will go into effect in 2020 and only apply to those not yet eligible for Medicare by January 1, 2020. If you enroll in a Medicare Supplement Plan F or Plan C by that date, or you’re already currently enrolled, you can keep your plan.
Medicare Supplement plans in 2020: another high-deductible option
If you like the high-deductible aspect of Medicare Supplement Plan F but won’t be eligible for Medicare by the deadline, you may be disappointed to hear the plan will no longer be offered to new enrollees. As mentioned, you may be able to enroll in Medicare Supplement Plan F if you’re eligible for Medicare before January 1, 2020.
As another option, Medicare Supplement Plan G may become updated in 2020 to include a high-deductible version, according to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. This new high-deductible Plan G will be similar to the current high-deductible Medicare Supplement Plan F. You’ll pay for Medicare-covered costs up to the plan’s deductible amount. Once you reach that amount, your plan’s coverage starts.
The high-deductible Plan G may be offered starting January 1, 2020. Availability may vary by location. Please note that unlike the current high-deductible Medicare Supplement Plan F, Plan G will not cover the Part B deductible.