I was recently reading an article titled “3 Smart Medicare Advantage Moves” in an online publication called Madison.com. The author was “pushing” Medicare Advantage plans over traditional Medicare.The reasons stated in the article could be summed up as:
- Many Medicare Advantage plans cover hearing, vision, and/or dental care. Most also include your prescription drug coverage.
- A Medicare Advantage Plan can cost you less.
- And I quote from the article “While original Medicare can’t be used outside U.S. borders, some Medicare Advantage plans offer coverage abroad.”
Although some Advantage plans do have hearing, vision and/or dental care, it is usually extremely limited coverage. For instance, hearing aids are usually not covered. Medicare doesn’t cover hearing aids and most Advantage plans follow Medicare guidelines when it comes to what they cover.
Second, although many Advantage plans have low or no premiums (Tucson plans are zero premium plans), they do have copays and coinsurance with maximum out of pocket costs (MOOP). In Tucson, the MOOPs range from $3200 annually to $6700 depending on your plan. So if you were healthy, hardly saw the doctor, an Advantage plan with no premium and low co pays would probably be less expensive. But if you were very ill, and really had to use the health care system, traditional Medicare with a plan F Supplement would cost you less in the course of a year. So that statement, as made in the article would be FAKE in those cases.
Finally, Medicare does cover you outside of the U.S. borders in the event of an emergency. The article said it didn’t AND went on to further state that some Medicare Advantage plans off coverage abroad. If you didn’t do your homework, you might assume you could find a plan and use it in Costa Rica, Spain, or wherever. Again, FAKE news.
As a broker offering most Medicare Advantage plans and supplements in the Tucson area, it is important to find out how to choose a plan. Many factors are involved including your lifestyle, your travel plans every year, and your doctors. We can help you sort through these questions. And we can give you the real scoop.