Medicare Supplement Changes to Plans C and F
Will they affect you?
There is a lot of confusion as to what is happening with Medicare Supplement Plans C and F beginning January 1, 2020. Let’s start at the beginning as to why these changes are occurring. These changes were addressed in The Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (known as MACRA).
MACRA prohibits the sale of Medicare Supplement policies that cover Part B deductibles to “newly eligible” Medicare beneficiaries defined as those individuals who: (a) have attained age 65 on of after January 1, 2020; or (b) first become eligible for Medicare due to age, disability or end-stage renal disease, on or after January 1, 2020. This prohibition applies to all states including waiver states.
As of January 1, 2020, MACRA does the following: First, it prohibits first dollar Part B coverage on Medicare Supplement Plans C and F to “newly eligible” Medicare beneficiaries; so, Plans C and F cannot be sold to those “newly eligible” for Medicare. Second, it makes Plan D and G the guarantee issue plans for those “newly eligible” Medicare beneficiaries for the specified periods under current law that name Plan C or F for current Medicare beneficiaries.
If you purchased a plan C or F prior to January 1, 2020 you can keep the plan. Plans C and F can still be sold after January 1, 2020, but only to Medicare beneficiaries who were 65 prior to January 1, 2020 or first became eligible for Medicare prior to January 1, 2020.
One other item mentioned in MACRA was the replacement of Medicare cards removing your social security number and replacing it with a unique 11-character Medicare number. This new Medicare number is made up only of numbers and uppercase letters (no special characters). All new Medicare cards have been mailed out. If you have not received your new Medicare card by now call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227). TTY users can call 1-877-486-2048 and request your new card. After December 31, 2019 Medicare cards with your social security number will no longer be valid to use for claims processing.
Loretta Hartzell is a licensed insurance agent with an office in Greenville, SC and can be reached at (864) 232-1161 or (800) 293-2246 or Loretta@hartzellassociates.com