Aetna Medicare Supplement plans are available under the subsidiary companies owned and operated by Aetna, depending on the state. These companies include Aetna Health and Life, Continental Life of Brentwood Tennessee, and American Continental.
Founded in 1853, Aetna is one of the most recognized and trusted names in the insurance industry. The company name was inspired by an 11,000-foot volcano on the eastern shores of Sicily, Mt. Etna, which was an active volcano in Europe. Aetna has been in the Medicare field since 1966. They offer a wide range of insurance products including dental and vision, group, disability, life insurance, and long term care. This diversity of products provides financial stability, garnering an “A” rating with AM Best.
Neither Aetna or its affiliates nor its Medicare supplement insurance policies are connected with or endorsed by the U.S. government or the federal Medicare program.
Aetna Medicare Supplement Benefits
When you choose an Aetna Medicare supplement, here are some of the benefits you will receive:
- Ability to utilize any doctor, specialist, or hospital anywhere in the country that accepts original Medicare
- Covers inpatient hospital stays, including an additional 365 days after Medicare runs out
- Covers outpatient medical costs
- Enhanced preventative benefits to keep you healthy
- Coverage for diabetic supplies and durable medical equipment
- Portable coverage nationwide
- Some coverage for foreign travel
One of the biggest benefits of having a Medicare supplement, or Medigap, plan with any company is freedom of choice and freedom of access. There are no network limitations on Medigap plans. You can go to any provider anywhere in the United States as long as they accept original Medicare. If they do accept Medicare, they will automatically accept your Aetna Medicare supplement plan, no questions asked. Aetna participates in the Medicare crossover billing system. So when your provider sends the claim to Medicare, Medicare pays their portion and automatically files the remainder to the insurance company.
This seamless billing system means you will not see a claim form or have a problem with a claim unless it is sent incorrectly by your provider. And in the rare case that happens, you don’t have to call the insurance company and hold forever to talk to a representative. One of the benefits of using an independent agent is that you call us and we will take care of the issue on your behalf. That is what an independent agency like Integrity Senior Solutions Inc does – we work for you, not the insurance companies.
Why Choose a Medigap Plan From Aetna?
- Coverage is guaranteed renewable for life – it cannot be canceled if you develop health problems
- Household discount when 2 people insured (where available)
- Initial 12-month rate lock
- 30 day free look period
- Strong company with a strong AM Best rating – “A” rated
- Easy-to-use customer online portal through the Aetna website
Aetna Medicare Supplement Plan F
***AS OF JAN 1, 2020, THE PLAN F IS NO LONGER AVAILABLE TO THOSE WHO ARE NEW TO MEDICARE***
Aetna Medicare Supplement Plan F covers all of the deductibles and co-pays of Medicare. Many have referred to Plan F as the “Cadillac Plan” over the years. Plan F is the same from company to company because all Medigap plans are standardized by the government. An Aetna Medicare supplement Plan F is like every other Medigap lettered plan in that you can go to any doctor, any specialist (without a referral!), or any hospital anywhere in the country that accepts Medicare. This is in stark contrast to Medicare Advantage plans that restrict you to their networks.
There are changes coming to all Plan F supplements beginning in 2020. New Medicare beneficiaries will not be able to enroll in Plan F starting January 1, 2020. If you have a Plan F when 2020 rolls around, you will be allowed to keep it. But there are some factors that you might consider as to whether that will be the best decision moving forward. We cover the details of the changes coming and how they could potentially affect Plan F rates in the article at this link.
Aetna Medicare Supplement Plan G
Aetna Medicare Supplement Plan G has been one of our top sellers ever since the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) was passed into law in 2015. The law goes into effect on January 1, 2020.
The only difference between Plan F and Plan G as you can see in the chart below is that Plan G does not cover the Part B deductible. In 2020, that annual deductible is $198. Yet, often the difference in premium between these plans is a few hundred dollars per year or more.
However, with the changes coming to the way Medicare plans are structured beginning in 2020 under the MACRA law, Plan G will now be the preferred plans for those who qualify for Guaranteed Issue coverage. The rate stability we have seen over the last few years will likely go away as Guaranteed Issue Enrollees no longer have the option to choose Plan F for their coverage. More people with pre-existing conditions will be enrolling in Plan G because of the new rules.
High Deductible Plan G Option
As of January 1, 2020, the high Deductible Plan F was replaced by the High Deductible Plan G as the only high deductible option for Medigap. Here is how it works:
- There is an annual deductible that must be paid before the plan pays anything towards your medical care. In 2020, that deductible is $2,340.
- Medicare Part B has a separate deductible of $198 in 2020.
- Payment for Part A services (hospital and in-patient mostly) is applied to the $2,340 annual deductible but is not applied to the Part B deductible ($198 in 2020).
- Payment for Part B services (office visits and outpatient services) is subject to the annual deductible of $198 before Medicare starts paying its 80% share of Medicare benefits. However, payment of the Part B deductible IS applied to the overall deductible of $2,340 annually.
- After your annual deductibles are met, High Deductible Plan G will cover all remaining deductibles and co-payments for Medicare-approved care.
Aetna Medicare Plan N
Plan N may be the best option for you if you are willing to cover some small out-of-pocket expenses in exchange for a lower monthly premium. Like the Plan G, The Plan N does not cover the annual Part B deductible (which is $198 in 2020). Also, you will also be responsible for a doctors visit co-pay of up to $20 per visit. There is a $50 co-pay for emergency room visits. If you are admitted to the hospital as a result of your emergency room visit, that deductible is waived.
Plan N also does not cover Excess Charges. However, your provider cannot charge you more than 15% above what Medicare approves for any procedure or visit. That 15% they are allowed to charge is called an Excess Charge. We cover Excess Charges in depth at the article at this link.
Bad Experience With an Aetna Plan Through Your Employer?
We do hear this from time to time. Someone is a little leery of using Aetna because a problem they had when covered by Aetna through an employer. I can speak from experience on this because we had Aetna covered when my wife taught school many years ago. We had one claim that it took several calls and almost two years to get straightened out. And being an insurance agent, I knew how to handle the issue and what needed to be done. But even with that, I had trouble getting them to listen to me. So I understand that sentiment.
Another complaint we hear is that there are a lot of negative reviews online about Aetna Medicare plans. Yes, that is correct. But almost 100% of those are complaints about Aetna Medicare ADVANTAGE plans, not their Medigap plans. There are a lot of issues that we have to deal with on the Medicare Advantage plans, even though we only started offering them in the last few months due to demand. And although we have about a 12-to-1 ratio through our office of Medicare supplement vs. Medicare Advantage clients, our handling of claims for our clients (which we offer as a free service to our clients) is consumed about 12 times more often by Medicare Advantage plans.
Problems with billing, problems with in-network or out of network, problems with being denied treatments – these are all things we have to deal with in the Medicare Advantage area and it leads to many people venting their frustrations with those plans in online reviews. Maybe that is why Medicare Advantage plans pay the agent so much more commission to sell those plans than a Medicare supplement plan. Didn’t know that? It’s true. Maybe that is why so many agents push those plans. We cover that in our YouTube video at this link.
As I mentioned above, the Medicare supplement plans have a seamless billing system with Medicare. And if Medicare approves the procedure, your Aetna Medicare supplement plan WILL pay their portion. They have no option. So the next time you see one of those negative reviews, read a little closer. It is almost assuredly an issue with the Medicare Advantage side.
Aetna Medicare supplement plans are administered in a totally separate division in a completely different city hundreds of miles apart. As with any Medigap plan, we know that there will be little chance of having a problem with a claim. And if you do, you don’t have to handle it. That’s why you have us as your agent. We will handle it for you and help you get a resolution to the problem.
Aetna companies have maintained their “A” rating for many years now. Their financial stability and outstanding claims and customer service departments make them one of the strongest companies we can recommend. They definitely get two thumbs up from us.
For assistance, call us at 1-888-228-6119 toll free or use the form to the right.
Be sure to check out our YouTube channel for helpful, educational Medicare information (LINK).
Keith Murray is an independent agent and the founder of Integrity Senior Solutions Inc. He has over 23 years of experience working with Seniors to meet their insurance and financial needs.