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Medicare Supplement Insurance


Medicare is a good start to maintaining health care coverage, but it’s just a start. SHIIP–SMP can help you sort through dozens of supplemental coverage plans. Below you'll find a number of resources to help you.

Supplement Insurance FAQs

Learn the answers to our most frequently asked questions about Medicare Supplement Insurance.

I am turning 65 and going on Medicare. What do I need to know about Medicare supplement insurance?

Buying Medicare supplement insurance is a way to protect yourself from some of the costs not covered by Medicare. It is also called “Medigap” or “Med Supp” insurance. There are 10 standardized Medicare supplement plans identified by the letters "A" through "N." Plans F and G are also available as a high deductible plans. Plans C and F are only available to individuals eligible for Medicare prior to January 1, 2020.

The benefits in each plan are identical from company to company. Click the link below to view the free SHIIP–SMP guide that explains Medicare supplement insurance.

If you have an employer-sponsored retiree health plan or receive Medicaid benefits you may not need a Medicare supplement.  Click the link below to view and download the SHIIP factsheet, Getting Ready to Retire, which provides more information.

If you have a Medicare Advantage Plan, a Medicare Supplement will not pay benefits. If you have any questions, contact SHIIP at (800) 351-4664 (TTY 800-735-2942).

Can those who have Medicare because of disability buy a Medicare supplement plan?

A limited number of companies offer Medicare supplement insurance to those with disabilities. SHIIP-SMP’s Iowa Medicare Supplement & Premium Comparison Guide linked below lists those companies. It is important to note that only a few plans are guarantee issued. Policies that are guarantee issue will accept those with Medicare due to disability no matter what health conditions may exist. The waiting periods for pre-existing conditions should also be checked. This information is found in the premium section of the guide.

Is there a resource for viewing how often Medicare supplement companies/plans increase their rates?

Click the link below to view a list of medicare rate changes by company.