If you like the idea of precise customization, with lots of options for health coverage, then a Medicare Supplement Insurance Plan from Humana may be just what you’re looking for.
In this article, we’ll dive into the following topics:
- Who is Humana?
- Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans – A Quick Review
- Benefits Provided by Humana Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans
- How Much do Humana Supplement Insurance Plans Cost?
- Humana Medicare Supplement Insurance Discounts
- Which Medicare Supplement Plans Does Humana Offer?
- Breaking News on Plans C, F, and G
- Can I Change Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans?
- How to Enroll in a Humana Medicare Supplement Insurance Plan
Who is Humana?
Humana, founded in 1961, is headquartered in Louisville, Kentucky. They have more than 14 million members, including more than 8 million Medicare members. They are a Fortune 100 company with a financial strength rating of “A-” from A.M. Best.
In addition to their Medicare product offerings, they’re also a major player in individual and group health insurance, including:
- Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs)
- Preferred Provider Organizations (PPOs)
- Individual major medical
- Plans for military dependents and retirees
Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans – A Quick Review
Medicare Supplement Insurance policies are issued by private insurers, and are designed to work with Original Medicare. These policies fill in the gaps (amounts Original Medicare DOESN’T cover) to protect you from out-of-pocket expenses.
Original Medicare is composed of Part A (hospital services), and Part B (outpatient and physician services). Both parts of Original Medicare include deductibles and co-pays that you are responsible for. These amounts are NOT capped, so your exposure is unlimited.
Because they fill in these gaps, Supplement Insurance policies are often called Medigap Policies or Plans. Some of the expenses Medigap Plans can help cover include:
- Medicare Part A Deductible
- Medicare Part B Deductible
- Part B co-insurance – normally, you would pay 20% of Part B expenses.
- International emergency coverage – Original Medicare doesn’t provide any international coverage.
There are certain requirements that must be met in order to enroll in a Medicare Supplement Insurance Plan:
- You must be enrolled in Medicare Parts A and B
- You must keep paying your Part B premium
- You can’t also enroll in Medicare Advantage
- You must obtain prescription drug coverage from a standalone Part D Drug Plan
- You may have to be age 65 or older (depending on the state in which you reside)
Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Massachusetts have created their own Medicare Supplement Plans and laws. The other 47 states have adopted identical laws and allow standardized plans.
However, no matter which state you reside in, or which Medicare Supplement Plan you choose, you have the right to see any doctor who accepts Medicare patients.
Benefits Provided by Humana Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans
Medicare Supplement Insurance policies issued by Humana or its subsidiaries come with the following benefits (may vary by state):
- 30-day free look period
- SilverSneakers Fitness and Steps – Gym memberships and pedometer-based programs for those without access to a fitness center
- RX Discounts – save 20% or more on prescription drugs at participating pharmacies
- Vision discounts (for Value Plan Options)
- HumanaFirst – 24-hour nurse hotline
- Helpful and streamlined online portal
Humana adds an additional layer of benefits in some states by offering customers the choice between a “Value” and “Healthy Living” option for their Medicare Supplement Insurance policies. The Healthy Living Plan offers the following additional benefits:
- Basic dental coverage
- Basic vision coverage
Note that the Healthy Living option is not available in every State.
How Much do Humana Supplement Insurance Plans Cost?
As a private insurer, Humana sets its own premiums, although they are subject to regulatory approval. Humana’s premiums may be based on any or all of the following:
- Issue Age – the age at which you initially enroll
- Renewal Age – the age you attain each year after enrollment
- Tobacco use
- Standardized Plan chosen (more comprehensive plans, like F, cost more)
- Claims experience – actuals claims paid versus expected
Medicare Supplement Insurance carriers are allowed to adjust their premiums, and they generally do every year. As with most other forms of insurance, the younger you are the lower your premiums will be.
Humana Medicare Supplement Insurance Discounts
Humana offers the following discounts on their premiums:
- Automated Clearing House (ACH) Discount – $2 per month when you pay by ACH
- Household Discount – save 5% on premiums when two members share the same household
Which Medicare Supplement Plans Does Humana Offer?
Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans are issued in various standardized “Plans,” and each of these Plans fill in the Original Medicare gaps with different levels of coverage.
Humana offers all the standardized Medicare Supplement Plans ( A, B, C, D, F, High Deductible F, G, K. L, M, and N), although they don’t offer them all in every state.
Plans F, G, and N are the most popular with Medicare Beneficiaries, and are reviewed in detail below.
Human Plan F
This is the most comprehensive Plan available. It provides the following benefits:
- Part A and B deductible – 100% coverage
- 365 extra hospital days (beyond Original Medicare) during your lifetime
- First 3 pints of blood (Original Medicare covers anything beyond this)
- Part A hospice care co-insurance or co-payment
- 100% coverage of excess charges
- 100% of Medicare Part B co-insurance – for Medicare-approved Part B services, you pay $0 out of pocket
- Coverage for nursing home stays
- Emergency coverage internationally, up to Plan limits
Over the years, Plan F has been the go-to option for those who want to protect against large out-of-pocket medical expenses. In exchange for the comprehensiveness of coverage, Plan F charges the highest monthly premiums of any Medigap Plan.
Humana Plan G
Plan G is a relatively new Plan, and it offers nearly identical benefits as Plan F. The only difference in coverage is that Plan G does not cover the Part B deductible. You must pay the first $185 (2019 amount, subject to yearly adjustment by CMS) of Part B services.
This is an excellent Plan for those who want very comprehensive coverage, but for a lower monthly premium than Plan F.
Humana Plan N
Humana’s Plan N is nearly as comprehensive as Plans F and G, but does include more out-of-pocket expenses. Plan N closes the Part B coverage gap by using small co-pays. In this way, Plan N resembles employer-based coverage:
- Co-payments of $20 or less for office visits
- Co-payments of $50 or less for emergency visits
- NO coverage of Part B excess-charges (fees from physicians who don’t accept “Medicare assignment,” and limited to 15% above Medicare-set prices). These charges are easy to avoid by asking whether a physician accepts Medicare Assignment.
Plan N has a very attractive premiums, lower than both Plan F and G, in return for minimal out of pocket expenses in the form of co-pays.
All of Humana’s Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans are Guaranteed Renewable each year, so you can have peace of mind knowing your coverage cannot be cancelled as long as you make all required premium payments.
Breaking News on Plans C, F, and G
You have probably heard that Plan F is “going away.” This is not entirely correct. What is true is that Plans C, F, and High Deductible F will no longer be available to Beneficiaries who become eligible on or after January 1, 2020.
Any Beneficiary who is already eligible, even if they don’t currently have any of the affected Plans, will always be allowed to enroll in these Plans. If you became eligible for Medicare before January 1, 2020 you will be grandfathered into the Plans if you choose.
Another change for 2020 is the availability of High Deductible Plan G (HDG). This Plan will work just like regular Plan G except that a deductible of $2,180 must be paid before the Plan will pay benefits. In exchange for paying the deductible, the premium will be less than regular Plan G.
Can I Change Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans?
It is more difficult to change from one Medicare Supplement Plan to another, or from one insurance company to another, than it is to initially enroll in one. This is because Beneficiaries have guaranteed rights concerning their first Medigap Plan, but not on a subsequent Plan.
In order to enroll in a Medicare Supplement Insurance policy, or switch to a different one, after your initial Guaranteed Issue period, you will be subject to medical underwriting unless you qualify for an exception.
Some states, such as California, offer a provision known as the “Birthday Rule.” This rule gives you the right to change Plan type once a year, as long as you stay with the same company. For instance, you could switch from Plan F to G once per year without underwriting.
Check with your state insurance commission, or talk to an independent insurance agent to see if your state has this provision.
How To Enroll in a Humana Medicare Supplement Insurance Plan
You can easily enroll in a Humana Medigap Plan. Working with a licensed, independent agent, you can enroll:
- Online, through their secure website
- By phone
- By paper application (face to face, or through the mail)