What Is Medigap Plan N?

Couple of seniors near lake with Medigap Plan N

Medigap Plan NWhen first learning about Medicare, many people want to know which plan has the “most” coverage and benefits. This often leads people to ignore Plan N, but it actually has good benefits for a reasonable monthly premium. It’s a great choice, especially for those who are relatively healthy.

What Does Plan N Cover?

Medigap Plan N helps pay for costs that remain after Medicare Parts A and B pay on a medical claim. It acts as your secondary insurance plan. Out-of-pocket costs under Parts A and B include:

  • Part A deductible
  • Part B deductible
  • Part A hospital and skilled nursing care coinsurance based on the number of inpatient days
  • Hospice coinsurance
  • First 3 pints of blood
  • Part B coinsurance / copayments
  • Part B excess charges

Of these leftover costs, Plan N picks up all of them except for the Part B deductible and Part B excess charges. An “excess charge” is an amount over and above the Medicare-approved amount. Providers who do not accept Medicare assignment are allowed to add an additional 15% to the Medicare-approved cost for services. In addition, Plan N requires copayments for visits to the doctor (up to $20) and the emergency room (up to $50). The only Medicare Supplements that pick up more costs than Plan N are Plans C, F, and G. However, Plans C and F are not open to anyone who turned 65 after the year 2020.

Some people are not concerned by the out-of-pocket costs associated with Plan N. After all, the next-best option, Plan G, also doesn’t cover the Part B deductible. In addition, Part B excess charges are rare. In fact, eight states currently prohibit excess charges altogether. Lastly, doctors and emergency room facilities can choose to charge lesser amounts and the emergency room copay is waived if your visit results in an inpatient admission.

Mature couple walking with Medigap Plan N
These plans also do not include benefits for preventive and routine dental, vision, and hearing care, nor do they help pay for long-term care.

What Doesn’t Plan N Cover?

In addition to the Part B deductible and excess charges, Plan N does not include coverage for most prescription drugs. This is true of every Medicare Supplement plan. Anyone who chooses to enroll in a Medicare Supplement will need to also enroll in Medicare Part D.

These plans also do not include benefits for preventive and routine dental, vision, and hearing care, nor do they help pay for long-term care. Beneficiaries who want coverage for these services will need to enroll in additional policies.

How Much Does Plan N Cost?

Premiums for Medicare Supplements are based on several personal factors. Your age, gender, and zip code all help determine your premium. Men pay more than women, older beneficiaries pay more than younger ones, and people who live in areas with a higher cost of living typically pay more.

Insurance carriers are allowed to set their own rates for their policies. Since Medicare Supplements are standardized, meaning their benefits are always the same, it’s important to compare premiums from several carriers.

The average cost for Plan N in 2022 was about $110 per month. Many enrollees saw little to no rate increases over the last couple of years, which has made this plan even more desirable. Other plans, such as Plans F and G, typically see an annual increase between 3-5%.

Plan N is a great alternative for individuals who don’t see their doctor often, or at least not more than once per month. If you see your doctor more frequently, you may consider Plan G as you won’t have to worry about copays every time you visit the doctor.

Call to speak with one of our Medicare advisors to find out if Plan N might be a good option for you. We’ll help you compare its benefits and premiums to others on the market so you can make an informed decision about your Medicare plans.