May 1, 2017
Medicare Supplement insurance (aka Medigap Plans) will be made available in Idaho to Medicare-eligible individuals under age 65 with disabilities or end-stage renal disease beginning January 1, 2018. This change is thanks to an amended rule by the Idaho Department of Insurance. Previously only limited MedAdvantage plans were available to disabled individuals under age 65.
In response to concerns from Idahoans who qualified for Medicare due to disability but could not obtain Medicare Supplement insurance, the Department held negotiated rule making last fall. The rule was supported by industry and approved by the legislature. Medicare Supplement coverage can help pay some of the health care costs that Original Medicare does not cover, such as copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles.
“Twenty-five states currently require insurance companies to sell Medigap to individuals of all ages enrolled in Medicare Part B,” said Department Director Dean Cameron. “This rule change will expand options for Idahoans who qualify for Medicare regardless of their age.”
Kim Martin, State Government Affairs Director for DaVita, said, “Individuals with kidney failure and on dialysis can be subject to significant out-of-pocket costs given their medical needs. In these situations, access to Medicare Supplement insurance can be crucial to helping them manage their personal costs. As a dialysis provider, DaVita appreciates the Department’s efforts to expand access to the state’s Medigap plans which will help provide peace of mind to those patients we have the privilege of caring for.”
Insurance companies will be developing and submitting plans for 2018. Eligible individuals can sign up for coverage effective January 1, 2018, including those who previously missed their six-month enrollment window. The Department’s Senior Health Insurance Benefits Advisors (SHIBA) counselors are available to answer questions at 800-247-4422 and provide information to all Idahoans who are eligible for Medicare coverage. The Department of Insurance said consumers should consult with a licensed agent before purchasing coverage.
You may Contact Us at AMERICAN INSURANCE 208-746-09646 to talk with one of our licensed health insurance agents about your options for Medicare Supplement plans.
Source: Idaho Department of Insurance, News Release - May 1, 2017 Medicare Supplement Rule Amended.