Is searching for the best Medicare Advantage Plan futile?
Anyone who has ever enrolled in an Advantage plan has hoped that they found the best Medicare Advantage Plan available. But what qualifies for the best Plan?
There are countless search queries for some variation of the phrase all in the hope that the name of the best plan will be presented in the search results. The truth of the matter is that there is no “best Medicare Advantage plan” in the universal sense.
That’s not to say that the best plan is not available… out there somewhere for you to find. It’s just going to take a little work on your part. Once you find the best Advantage Plan available you have to ask yourself if it’s the best type of Medicare Plan for you in general.
What I mean to say is, if you have decided that an Advantage Plan is the best way for you to receive your Medicare benefits but you have very few plans available in your area, you have to decide if you have a large enough sample to find anything that will suit your needs.
Maybe through you search for the best Advantage Plan you determine that given the limited choice available, you may be better off with original Medicare or original Medicare and a Medicare supplement.
What determines which Medicare Advantage Plan is best?
The best Advantage Plan for you may not be the best for someone else. Because there are several types of plans available with different costs and benefits you will need to assess your individual situation to choose the best plan. And because Medicare Advantage Plans are annual plans and can change from year to year you will need to re-assess your plan options every year. If the following factors all fall into place you may have found the best plan:
- The plan is affordable both in monthly premiums and in cost-sharing when using the plan.
- Your providers including specialists and hospitals are in network.
- You understand the rules of the plan and can abide by them. For instance, if requesting a referral to see a specialist is not something you are willing to do, do not choose a Medicare HMO plan.
- Your drugs should be included in the plan’s formulary if you are enrolling in a plan with drug coverage.
- The plan should include the extra benefits, i.e. dental, vision, etc. that are important to you.
- You should also check with Medicare to see if the plan has been flagged as having been rated poorly.
If you have found a plan that meets with your satisfaction it could be described as the best plan. When considering plans you need to be realistic. If your budget is very limited you may have to settle for what is available. Just remember that the best Medicare Advantage Plan is a plan that is suitable to your circumstances and not a universally accepted plan with a blue ribbon attached.
IM COFUSED I AM 52 UNEMPLOYED WITH NO MEDICAL DENTAIL OR HEALTH INSURANCE NEITHER IS MY MOTHER WHOM IS 73 JUST WANT TO KNOW WHAT KIND OF PLANS WILL FIT MY BUDJET AND WHAT DO YOU OFFER
James, Medicare Plan Review is a resource for people on Medicare interested in information about Medicare Advantage Plans, Medicare supplement policies and Medicare Part D. No products are offered on this site. If you are not eligible for Medicare there is little information that will benefit you on this site. Your mother on the other hand could benefit by requesting our free mini course on Medicare plans. Each page displays the registration form in the upper right of the page. I would start there. You may also benefit by contacting a local insurance agent who can assess your needs.
I have medicare A & B i also have a B/C B/S insurance with General Motors the old G.M. but the B/C B/S has cut so much and now the deductabls are so high and i can’t pay copays of 60 for med. i need help i looked went to many advantage plans in Nov. Dec, and was told i could go to advantage plan an not lose my B/C/ B/S the i was told i would i talked to B/C B/S myself got 2 differant answears from 2 people same things at the local meetings so i got so stressed over it i did nothing . but i have to do somthing B/C B/S i have to pay $250..for the year before they pay aything just like the Medicare it’s i belive $135.00 yearly . the salary retires over 65 from G.M. had their insurance droped a few years back byt G.M. gives them $300.00 per month to buy a gap ins. i wish i had that deal i coulod buy one heck of a gap ins.please help me with the Advantage plan if i world get more help from it.
Betty, If you enroll in an Advantage plan you will lose your former employers group policy and will not be able to reinstate it if you are unhappy with an Advantage plan. But if you cannot afford the Blue Cross insurance plan that may not be a huge concern.
Medicare Advantage plans are available County by County. You may have dozens of choices or very few. To advise you on a specific plan without knowing more about your situation would be irresponsible. Contact a local insurance broker in your area that can offer you one on one assistance. Sorry I’m not much more help.
I will be 65 in mid Jan 2012 and I would like to know if I should speak with different Insurance Agents about an Advantage plan in conjunction to my Medicare of which I will be eligable for. Also when do I need to apply for both Mediacare and an Advantage plan so that I will not be without coverage.
Peg, If you or your spouse have worked 40 quarters and paid Medicare tax you will automatically be enrolled in Medicare. You will generally receive information from Medicare within 3-4 months of the month you turn 65. You can enroll in an Advantage plan 3 months prior to your birth month so it will be effective when your Medicare starts.
Don’t rule out looking at a Medicare supplement if it is affordable. Medicare supplement Plan N is a good alternative to a Medicare Advantage Plan. You can speak with several agents or a broker that represents many companies. You will show up on turning 65 marketing lists about 6 months prior to turning 65 and will be bombarded with solicitations. It can be over whelming. If you choose a supplement make sure you do your home work on a suitable Medicare Part D plan for 2012.
Have just turned 65. Healthy, take no prescriptions.
Need cataract surgery. Which plan would be best.
Ken, You will first need to determine whether you want to stay with original Medicare, purchase a Medigap policy or enroll in a Medicare advantage plan. If you haven’t already signed up for my free mini-course, that would be a good place to start. You may also want to meet with an agent in your area. Anyone who would give their recommendation based on the information provided would be would be doing you a dis-service.