The Best Medicare Supplement (Medigap) Plans in Iowa

Christian Worstell
In this article...
  • Medicare Supplement (Medigap) plans help cover Medicare costs like deductibles, coinsurance and copays. Learn about Iowa Medigap options and find out how to compare and apply for plans available where you live.

Beneficiaries of Original Medicare (Part A and B) in Iowa and across the country rely on Medicare Supplement insurance to help pay their out-of-pocket Medicare costs. These plans, also called Medigap plans, can cover Original Medicare deductibles, copays, coinsurance and more.

Nearly two thirds (65%) of Original Medicare beneficiaries in Iowa are enrolled in a Medicare Supplement plan.1

If you’re looking to purchase a Medigap policy in Iowa, coverage options and price points may vary depending on the plan and provider you choose. The information and reviews in this article are intended to help you understand what coverage options are available so you can select the plan that best suits your needs.

Have Medicare questions?

Talk to a licensed agent today to find a plan that fits your needs.

What Are the Best Iowa Medicare Supplement Plans?

To understand what the best Iowa Medicare supplement plans are and how to choose the policy that's right for you, it’s crucial to understand the differences between plans and what they mean for policyholders.

Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans 2024
Medicare Supplement Benefits A B C1 D F1 G K L M N
Part A coinsurance and hospital costs
Part B coinsurance or copayment 50% 75%
First 3 pints of blood 50% 75%
Part A hospice care co-insurance or co-payment 50% 75%
Co-insurance for skilled nursing facility     50% 75%
Medicare Part A deductible   50% 75% 50%
Medicare Part B deductible                
Medicare Part B excess charges                
Foreign travel emergency     80% 80% 80% 80%     80% 80%
1. Plans C and F are not available to new beneficiaries who became eligible for Medicare on or after January 1, 2020.
2. Plans F and G also offer a high deductible plan which has an annual deductible of $2,800 in 2024. Once the annual deductible is met, the plan pays 100% of covered services for the rest of the year. The high deductible Plan F is not available to new beneficiaries who became eligible for Medicare on or after January 1, 2020.
3. Plan K has an out-of-pocket yearly limit of $7,060 in 2024. Plan L has an out-of-pocket yearly limit of $3,530 in 2024.
4. Plan N pays 100% of the Part B coinsurance, except for a copayment of up to $20 for some office visits and up to $50 for emergency room visits that don’t result in an inpatient admission.
View an image version of this table.

Types of Medigap Plans

There are 10 standardized types of Medigap plans in most states, and each category is identified by a single letter between A and N. Regardless of the issuer, all plans offer the same base of benefits. Across all 10 categories, coverage includes reimbursement for at least a portion of the following expenses after Medicare has reimbursed for its percentage of costs:

  • Part A and B coinsurance
  • Blood needed for transfusions
  • Hospice care copay or coinsurance (Part A)
  • 365 days of in-hospital care after exhausting Medicare Part A benefits

Although all plan types offer the same foundational benefits, some provide additional coverage for residential skilled nursing and services and supplies rendered during foreign travel. Certain plans may also pay for medical charges that exceed the Medicare-approved amount. Plan types may differ in the percentage of coverage for certain supplies and services, and limitations and restrictions may apply under certain plan types.

Because Medigap categories are standardized, plans of a certain letter designation offer the same benefits regardless of the issuer. That means that if you purchase Plan C, coverage is the same regardless of who you bought it from.

For a more comprehensive comparison of Medigap plan types by letter, refer to the accompanying chart.

Popular Medigap Plans

Medigap plans vary in popularity, with Plans F, G and N often being the most popular among Medicare beneficiaries. This trio of plans typically comes with lower premiums, making them a viable choice for seniors living on a fixed income. However, they usually have a high deductible, which must be met before you’re eligible for reimbursement. All three plans cover the coinsurance for skilled nursing facility care, plus 80% of foreign travel exchange. To qualify for enrollment in Plan F, you must have been eligible for Medicare prior to January 1, 2020.

Medigap Availability by Issuer

Although insurance companies that issue Medigap plans may each have a different selection of plans, every insurer that offers these plans is required to sell plans A, C and F. Because benefits are standardized by plan type, the main difference between companies is the premium, so you can shop around for the best price. 

How Do I Enroll in an Iowa Medigap Plan?

You’re eligible to purchase an Iowa Medigap plan once you hit age 65 and are enrolled in Medicare Part B. After choosing a suitable Medigap plan, enrollment may be completed through the private insurer of your choice.

Medigap’s Open Enrollment Period

Ideally, you should enroll in a plan during your Medigap open enrollment period, which begins the first day of the month you are 65 and are enrolled in Medicare Part B, and it stays open for six months.

While your Medigap open enrollment period is in effect, enrollment in the Medigap plan of your choice is guaranteed. During this timeframe, an insurer legally can’t deny you coverage or charge you a higher premium for a plan, even if you have health issues that may label you a higher risk. Once your Medigap open enrollment period closes, insurers are permitted to use medical underwriting to assess an applicant’s risk, potentially leading to higher premiums or coverage denial for seniors who have health issues.

If you’re over 65 but have a health insurance plan through your employer or union, you may prefer to wait before enrolling in Medicare Part B. In this situation, you may also be able to delay your Medigap enrollment period. Your six-month open enrollment then will likely begin once your current health care coverage ends and you enroll in Medicare Part B.

Have Medicare questions?

Talk to a licensed agent today to find a plan that fits your needs.

Guaranteed Issue Rights

If you don’t enroll in a Medigap plan during your Medigap open enrollment period, federal law may still protect your right to purchase a policy in certain circumstances. Under these guaranteed issue rights, insurance companies that offer Medigap plans must sell you a policy after the open enrollment period ends without regard for potential underwriting risks.

Guaranteed issue rights typically apply in several common scenarios, but aren't limited to these examples:

  • A Medicare beneficiary needs to purchase a new Medigap plan after losing their current coverage for a reason outside of their control.
  • A Medicare beneficiary reverts to Original Medicare from a Medicare Advantage plan because their MA plan has been discontinued, they moved out of the plan’s service area or they exercised a trial right for a Medicare Advantage plan but switched back to Part B within the year.
  • A Medicare beneficiary loses an employer-sponsored plan that was supplementing their Medicare coverage.
  • A Medicare beneficiary relinquishes their current Medigap coverage due to an issuer’s misleading policies.

If you’ve experienced one of these circumstances or another guaranteed issue right applies, you may still be able to purchase a Medigap plan even if your open enrollment period has ended. If you’re applying for Medigap coverage under a guaranteed issue right, an insurance company may not refuse you coverage or charge you a higher premium due to underwriting risks.

If you qualify for a plan under a guaranteed issue right, this federal protection typically applies for up to 63 days after your current supplemental coverage ends. After that, Medigap policy issuers may apply standard medical underwriting practices.

  1. AHIP. (Feb, 2023). The Sate of Medicare Supplement Coverage Trends in Enrollment and Demographics.

Christian Worstell
About the Author

Christian Worstell is a senior Medicare and health insurance writer with He is also a licensed health insurance agent. Christian is well-known in the insurance industry for the thousands of educational articles he’s written, helping Americans better understand their health insurance and Medicare coverage.

Christian’s work as a Medicare expert has appeared in several top-tier and trade news outlets including Forbes, MarketWatch, WebMD and Yahoo! Finance.

While at HelpAdvisor, Christian has written hundreds of articles that teach Medicare beneficiaries the best practices for navigating Medicare. His articles are read by thousands of older Americans each month. By better understanding their health care coverage, readers may hopefully learn how to limit their out-of-pocket Medicare spending and access quality medical care.

Christian’s passion for his role stems from his desire to make a difference in the senior community. He strongly believes that the more beneficiaries know about their Medicare coverage, the better their overall health and wellness is as a result.

A current resident of Raleigh, Christian is a graduate of Shippensburg University with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. You can find Christian’s most recent articles in our blog.

If you’re a member of the media looking to connect with Christian, please don’t hesitate to email our public relations team at

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