Medicare Advantage Plan Pro/Con Analysis – Senior Insurance Guidebook Launched

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The publication’s release presents a detailed analysis of the Medicare Advantage option and how it compares to original Medicare in terms of costs and coverages. Supplemental insurance is also discussed in depth.

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The new book notes that the US population over the age of 65 is growing by 10,000 per day as baby boomers age. Too many American seniors opt for Medicare Advantage plans over private insurers without knowing the disadvantages, according to the author.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the government agency that administers Medicare, favors Medicare Advantage over other options like supplement plans, Bynon writes. Instead, those approaching age 65 are advised to consider the pros and cons before enrolling in an Advantage plan.

The guide lays out the essential facts about Medicare, which includes Part A hospital coverage and Part B coverage for doctor visits. Because Medicare only covers about 80 percent of costs, most seniors purchase a plan to make up the difference.

The type of coverage is important to choose wisely. Those who purchase a Medigap plan, instead of an Advantage plan, pay a monthly premium but no additional costs, making it easier for retirees on a fixed budget. However, Medicare plans may not cover extra benefits, such as telehealth services, that Medicare Advantage plans may offer.

In an Advantage plan, the patient pays per medical service rendered, leaving seniors vulnerable to unexpected health care costs, a disadvantage for those with chronic health conditions like high blood pressure, heart disease, or diabetes. In addition, most Advantage plans are HMOs or PPOs, which are group health plans that limit the choice of doctors.

Another concern that Bynon voices about Advantage plans are that they may require patients to get pre-approval from the insurance company in order to receive treatment. Those who instead opt for original Medicare with a Medigap supplement do not need these pre-certifications.

Medicare Advantage plans have low premiums, but beneficiaries still need to pay Medicare premiums, and out-of-pocket costs can add up quickly. Another concern is that hospital stays may cost more on an Advantage plan.

Additional content in the book covers the rights and protections that Medicare beneficiaries need to know about, especially low-income qualifiers.

“Low monthly premiums tease many people into Medicare Advantage plans,” Bynon says, “Then the bills start showing up and reality sets in.”

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David Bynon
David Bynon


United States

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Disclaimer: The views, suggestions, and opinions expressed here are the sole responsibility of the experts. No Daily Jaipur journalist was involved in the writing and production of this article.