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What is Medicare Advantage?

This video lays half the ground work for determining whether your best plan will be a Medicare Advantage Plan or a Medicare supplement, also known as a Medigap policy. When learning anything new it’s best to start with the basics. Much of the confusion surrounding Medicare Advantage stems from not really knowing what it is and how it works. This video answers that question.

Medicare Advantage defined

Before you enroll in a Medicare Advantage Plan you should know what it is and what it is not. Medicare Advantage Plans are offered by private insurance companies and are another way to receive your Medicare benefits. Enrolling in a Medicare Advantage Plan does not mean you are leaving original Medicare. The private insurance company administering your plan provides all the benefits. The plan must include Medicare Parts A and B and usually includes Part D drug benefits. Many Advantage Plans also include some extra benefits such as dental, vision or a gym membership.

Medicare Advantage Plans are not Medicare supplements and as such generally require you to use a network of approved providers. Plans often have a PPO or HMO network. Advantage Plans have become quite popular with nearly 17.6 million enrolled. One reason why Medicare Advantage Plans are so popular is because many plans ofer a $0 monthly premium. Plans are not considered to be free because cost sharing is still required. The enrolled member will often pay a deductible, copays and coinsurance. If your budget is tight a Medicare Advantage Plan may be a good option.