Medicare Supplement Plan G

December 12, 2019

Plan G is a type of supplemental insurance for Medicare. Supplemental insurance plans help cover certain health care costs, such as deductibles, coinsurance, and copayments. Without a supplement plan, you’d have to pay those expenses yourself.

Some people call Medicare supplement plans “Medigap” because they “fill in the gaps” that exist in Medicare. Plan G is one of 10 major Medicare supplement plans currently offered to new Medicare enrollees. The plans are named by letter, ranging from A to N.

Plan G is the second-most comprehensive Medicare supplement plan available, next to Plan F. Plan G is also growing in popularity.1

Plan G: Who is it for?

  • People who value simplicity and convenience. With Plan G, you pay your premiums and little else. Almost all of your out-of-pocket costs are covered, with two exceptions: You will still pay your Part B deductible ($198 in 2020)2 in addition to 20% of any emergency care you receive abroad.
  • People who want the flexibility to see any doctor without paying more. Plan G is one of only two supplement plans that cover Part B excess charges (extra charges from doctors who don’t participate in Medicare).
  • People who frequently travel to foreign countries. Plan G covers 80% of emergency health care costs while in another country, after you pay a $250 deductible.3
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Debra is 64 and plans to retire next year. She will apply for Medicare Part A and Part B. Debra loves to be outside, gardening or walking her dogs. She has had a few suspicious lesions removed recently by her dermatologist, who doesn’t accept Medicare assignment. Also, Debra wants to travel the world in her early retirement and is concerned about needing care overseas. After doing some research, Debra decided to purchase Medigap Plan G, as it will cover any Part B excess charges from her dermatologist and pay for emergency services abroad.

What does Medigap Plan G cover?

Plan G is one of the more generous Medicare supplement plans available. However, for that peace of mind, you will pay premiums that are higher than most other plans.

Service
Covered?

Part A Hospital coinsurance (for 365 days after Original Medicare benefits are used up)

Yes

Part B coinsurance or copayment

Yes

Blood (first 3 pints)

Yes

Part A hospice coinsurance or copayment

Yes

Skilled nursing facility coinsurance (for 80 days)

Yes

Part A deductible

Yes

Part B deductible

No

Part B excess charges

Yes

Foreign travel emergency

80%

Out-of-pocket limit

N/A

Table created using information available at Medicare.gov as of 12/12/19.

Part B excess charges

Unlike most Medicare Supplement plans, Plan G covers your Part B excess charges. That means you can see providers who don’t accept Medicare assignment (don’t participate in Medicare), but they can charge 15% more than standard Medicare rates.4 Without coverage for excess charges, you pay that 15% difference.

Emergency health care costs while traveling abroad

Plan G also covers 80% of emergency health care costs while in another country. However, you must pay a $250 deductible first, and the care has to occur during the first 60 days of a trip. Also, the plan sets a lifetime limit of $50,000 on this type of coverage.5

No out-of-pocket limit

Original Medicare doesn't have an out-of-pocket limit. Similarly, Plan G has no out-of-pocket limit to protect you from spending too much on covered health care in a year. If you are interested in an out-of-pocket limit, consider Plan K or Plan L.

Plan G is most similar in coverage to Plan F. The only difference is that Plan F covers your Part B deductible, while Plan G does not.

Plan F will have limited enrollment for some beneficiaries beginning in 2020. If you sign up for Plan F, you will be able to keep it moving forward, but rates may go up as the pool of eligible people shrinks. Learn more about who can enroll in Plan F and whether you should.

Medicare Supplement Plan G: What you need to know before enrolling

Before you can sign up for Plan G, you must enroll in both Medicare Part A and Part B. The best time to enroll in Plan G is during your Medigap Open Enrollment period. That’s the six months immediately after you turn 65 and sign up for Part B, when you’re guaranteed by federal law to be accepted by any plan, regardless of health. You can enroll in or switch Medicare Supplement plans at other times, but the insurance companies can deny you or charge you more based on your health.

Most Medigap plans are standardized across the nation. However, if you live in Massachusetts, Minnesota, or Wisconsin, different types of plans are available. Contact one of our licensed insurance agents or your local state insurance department to help you understand your options.

Get Medigap Plan G

Medicare Supplement Plan G is a comprehensive insurance plan that covers most of your out-of-pocket costs on Medicare. If you think Plan G may be the right choice for you, call one of our licensed agents to get your application started.

Medicare Supplement Plan G FAQ

How does Plan G compare to other plans?

Plan G offers generous coverage compared to most other Medicare Supplement plans. (Plan F is the only plan that offers more.) However, more coverage generally means higher premiums. To help you determine which coverage you do and don’t need, see a chart that compares Medicare Supplement plans.

Is Plan G better than Plan F?

Plan G is very similar to Plan F. The only difference is the Part B deductible, which Plan F covers and Plan G does not. You may be able to find a Plan G that makes up for the additional cost.

Does Plan G have a high-deductible option like Plan F?

Not currently. However, it might in the future as Plan G is expected to become even more popular, especially after Plan F is no longer available to new enrollees.

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Sources

  1. America’s Health Insurance Plans, “State of Medigap 2019
  2. Medicare, "Costs at a Glance"
  3. Medicare, "Medigap and Travel"
  4. Medicare, "Lower Costs with Assignment"
  5. Medicare, "Medigap and Travel"

Content on this site has not been reviewed or endorsed by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the United States Government, any state Medicare agency, or any private insurance agency (collectively "Medicare System Providers"). Eligibility.com is a DBA of Clear Link Technologies, LLC and is not affiliated with any Medicare System Providers.

Written by
Kathryn Anne Stewart
Kathryn Anne Stewart is a freelance writer who covers the intersection of health and money. She has written for Johns Hopkins Medicine, Weight Watchers, Newsmax Magazine, Franklin Prosperity Report, and the National Hemophilia Foundation, often crafting clear explanations of complex topics. When she's away from her desk, you can find her reading a library book, watching stand-up comedy, or cycling with her husband.
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