Though the Medicare system was designed in part to simplify the healthcare system for seniors and those with disabilities, it is often difficult to navigate the system for the first time. If you’re ready to enroll in Medicare, it is critical that you understand how the system works and the choices that you have when enrolling. Though many of the Medicare policies and Medicare supplements are uniform from state to state, there are some ways in which they differ. If you live in Illinois and are interested in enrolling in Medigap or Medicare Advantage as a supplement to your Medicare, read on to learn about your options and the enrollment procedures that will ensure you get the coverage you need.
In 2012 there are 30 private insurance companies that are authorized to offer Medicare Advantage policies, and the average rating of these companies (according to 2011 reports) is 3.11 stars out of a possible 5 stars. There are also other ways in which Medicare Advantage plans differ. Some plans cover prescription drugs, for example, but not all do. Likewise, budget-conscious consumers may be interested to know that some policies have premiums as low as $0, but others have premiums over $100. Furthermore, each Medicare Advantage plan in Illinois offers coverage of different services and doctors. Therefore, no matter what your specific needs are it’s necessary to research this carefully before making a final decision. Fill out the zip code form to compare rates and plans instantly.
Unlike Medicare Advantage policies, which offer a variety of coverage depending on your personal needs, Medigap plans in Illinois are uniform throughout the state. Specifically, Medigap provides additional coverage for services covered by Medicare. Unlike Medicare Advantage, Medigap does not cover services such as eye care and dental care that are outside of the realm of services provided by traditional Medicare. Medigap policies in Illinois are guaranteed-issue, which means that applicants cannot be rejected even if they have a pre-existing condition. All Medigap policies in Illinois are also guaranteed-renewable. Nevertheless, the premium is not guaranteed at a certain rate, and your Medigap provider is able to raise your premium once annually based upon your class.
Finally, it is helpful to know that Illinois residents can return their Medigap plan within 30 days for any reason and receive a full refund. To compare available Medigap plans in your area, fill out the zip code form and view plans and pricing instantly.
In Illinois, residents who are about to turn 65 will be automatically enrolled in a standard Medicare Parts A and B. However, if you wish to enroll in Medicare parts C and D (Medigap supplemental insurance and prescription coverage, respectively), you may do so only within 6 months of becoming eligible for Medicare coverage. These 6 months are known as your “open enrollment” period. Illinois residents who do not register for either Medicare Advantage or Medigap coverage during their open enrollment period but decide later that they want extra coverage must register between October 15 and December 7, in order to begin this extra coverage on the first of January in the following year. Illinois residents under the age of 65 who are eligible for Medicare due to a disability can also apply for Medigap coverage during these open enrollment dates. To start learning about Medigap policies in your area, fill out the zip code form and compare rates instantly.
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