Lorilynn is 72 and has had a Medicare Supplement Plan F for about seven years. The price has increased a little each year and is now about $240 per month, so she decided to check into other options.

She has Parkinson’s, diabetes, heart disease, and is prone to falling. On a recent vacation, she fell and bumped her head and needed helicopter transport to a trauma center for brain surgery. She sees a physical therapist four times per week. She has had many other medical adventures in recent years and has never received a bill for any of it. Her Plan F pays for everything. In addition, she was able to spend a whole summer with her grandchildren 2,000 miles away and know she could seek medical care if needed. There are no provider networks with Medicare Supplements; enrollees can see any provider in America who accepts Medicare.

Because Lorilynn is not healthy enough to qualify for a different Medicare Supplement, I recommended that she keep her Plan F. Eventually, it may become too expensive for her and she can switch to Medicare Advantage. In her county, physical therapy copays are $40 on Medicare Advantage plans, so switching while she is getting physical therapy four times per week is not a smart move.

There are no date restrictions with MediGap plans (another name for Medicare Supplement). She can drop her supplement whenever she chooses. However, she can only add a Medicare Advantage plan in the Fall during Annual Election Period, for a January 1 start date. If she chooses to move to Medicare Advantage in the future, she will want to end her supplement on December 31 of the year before she starts her Advantage Plan on January 1.

Because Lorilynn started Medicare before 2020, she is eligible for a Medicare Supplement Plan F, which is being phased out and cannot be purchased by new-to-Medicare enrollees. Plans G and N are the most common Medicare Supplement plans for new enrollees.