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Medicare Supplement (Medigap) Plan B

Not to be confused with Medicare Part B, Medicare Supplement Plan B, or Medigap Plan B, is one of 10 Medigap Plans. As a supplemental plan, Medigap Plan B helps cover some of the costs not covered by your Original Medicare Part A and Part B. 

What Does Medigap Plan B Cover?Jump to
What’s Not Covered by Medigap Plan B?Jump to
Medigap Plan B vs Medicare Part BJump to
Is Medigap Plan B Right for Me?Jump to

What does Medigap Plan B Cover?

Medigap Plan B covers the same benefits as Medigap Plan A, plus your Part A hospital deductible. That’s 5 standard benefits in total, including:

  • Medicare Part A coinsurance & hospital costs 
  • Medicare Part B coinsurance or copayments 
  • First 3 pints of a blood transfusion 
  • Part A hospice care coinsurance or copayments 
  • Medicare Part A deductible 

The 5 standard Medigap Plan B benefits explained:

  1. Medicare Part A coinsurance and hospital costs
    Medigap Plan B covers your Part A coinsurance and hospital costs for days 61 through 150. In addition,
    this benefit covers up to 365 more hospital days after your Medicare benefits are used up.i

    Note: Typically, Medicare Part A coinsurances don’t kick in until after you’ve paid your deductible for the year, but since Medigap Plan B covers your Part A deductible, you don’t have to pay anything.
  2. Medicare Part B coinsurance or copayment
    Medigap Plan B covers your Part B coinsurances and copayments which are typically 20% of the Medicare-approved amount for most doctor services, outpatient therapy and durable medical equipment.i  

    Note: Medicare Part B coinsurances and copayments don’t kick in until after you’ve paid your Part B deductible. With Medigap Plan B, you are still required to pay your Part B deductible. i  
  3. First 3 pints of a blood
    Medigap Plan B covers the first three prints of blood per year. i 
  4. Medicare Part A hospice care coinsurance or copayment
    Medigap Plan B covers your 5% coinsurance for palliative drugs and respite care under the Part A hospice benefit. i 
  5. Medicare Part A deductible
    Original Medicare Part A charges deductibles per benefit period before your Medicare benefits can kick in.
    In 2022, the Part A deductible is $1,556ii. Medigap Plan B covers this cost for you.

What’s Not Covered by Medigap Plan B?

As one of the more basic plans, there are several benefits that Medigap Plan B does NOT cover that other Medigap Plans do, including:

  • Medicare Part B deductible 
  • Medicare Part B excess charges 
  • Foreign travel emergency 
  • Medicare Part B preventative coinsurance 
Benefits not covered by the standard Medigap plans

Regardless of which Medigap Plan you buy, it will not cover:

  • Routine dental, vision or hearing services
  • Eyeglasses or contacts
  • Hearing aids
  • Long-term care or custodial care
  • Prescription drugs

How Much Does Medigap Plan B Cost?

Like any Medigap Plan, Plan B comes with monthly premiums. These premiums are set by the insurance company selling the plan and can vary widely by region. There are also several other factors that impact rates like your age, your gender, whether you use tobacco products, if you qualify for any discounts and more. 

It’s best to compare Medigap plans in your area from as many insurance companies as possible.
Carriers can offer the same exact plans at different rates. So, comparison shopping will help you find the best rate available to you.   

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Note: You’ll still be responsible for paying your monthly Medicare Part A and Part B premiums – although most people don’t have Part A premiums. Make sure to factor in these costs when considering Medigap premiums.

Medigap Plan B vs Medicare Part B: Are they the same?

Medigap Plan B and Medicare Part B are not the same thing. People often confuse the two because the names are so similar, but it’s important to understand the difference.  

The Medicare program consists of Part A, Part B, Part C and Part D. Together, Part A and Part B make up Original Medicare. So, when talking about Part B, it’s always in reference to Original Medicare.  

Medigap Plans, on the other hand, supplement Original Medicare. In fact, Medigap Plan B covers some of the costs not covered by Medicare Part B. So, you could have both Medicare Part B and a Medigap Plan B at the same time.

Is Medigap Plan B Right for Me?

Whether Medigap Plan B is right for you is going to depend on your health status, budgetary restrictions and lifestyle. It’s also going to depend on how often you visit the doctor, whether you travel abroad, if you prefer to pay less up front for your healthcare in turn for more out-of-pocket costs and more. It’s also going to depend on where you live. For example, if your state allows Part B excess charges, you may want to consider a different Medigap Plan that covers these.

A Medigap Plan B might be right for you if you:

  • Want to pay less up front in premiums
  • Are ok with paying 50% of your hospital deductible
  • Only use providers that accept Medicare assignment
  • Visit the doctor and/or hospital in-frequently
  • Live in a state that does not allow Part B excess charges

If you need help determining which plan is best for you, Ensurem has licensed agents ready to answer your questions. They can also help you compare Medigap plans available in your area from some of the nation’s top-rated carriers.

Education is crucial in finding the right Medicare solution for you. With so many Medicare resources out there, it can be difficult finding a source you can trust. That’s why Ensurem has a Compliance Program dedicated to ensuring our Medicare content meets CMS regulations. So, you can rest assured you’re getting the information you need to make the right coverage decisions. Learn more here.

Ensurem Trusted Expertise

Education is crucial in finding the right Medicare solution for you. With so many Medicare resources out there, it can be difficult finding a source you can trust. That’s why Ensurem has a Compliance Program dedicated to ensuring our Medicare content meets Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) regulations. So, you can rest assured you’re getting the information you need to make the right coverage decisions.

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Denise Austin, 65, Ensurem Ambassador

Best-Selling Author, Creator of Fit Over 50 Magazine

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