Medicare Supplement Plan D
- Medicare Plan D is one of 10 standardized Medicare Supplement Insurance plans, not to be confused with Medicare Part D, which is Medicare drug coverage. Learn more and compare Medigap Plan D to other Medicare Supplement plans.
Medicare Supplement Plan D is one of the 10 standardized Medicare Supplement insurance plans available in most states. Plan D helps lower your Medicare costs by paying some of your Medicare copays, coinsurance and other costs.
Some beneficiaries may make the common mistake of confusing Plan D with Part D. In this guide, we’ll explain that important distinction along with all of the things you’ll need to know about Medicare Supplement Plan D such as benefits, cost, enrollment and more.
What Is Medicare Supplement Plan D?
Plan D is one of the 10 Medicare Supplement Insurance plans that are sold by private insurance companies in most states.
Medicare Supplement plans are designed to offer an added layer of cost coverage to Original Medicare (Medicare Part A and Part B). Medicare Supplement Insurance is also known as “Medigap.”
Medicare Supplement plans pay for many Original Medicare out-of-pocket costs such as deductibles, copayments and coinsurance. More than half of all Medicare beneficiaries who don’t have additional insurance such as Medicaid are enrolled in a Medigap plan.1
What Is Medicare Part D?
Medicare Part D plans provide coverage for prescription medications. Like Medicare Supplement plans, these plans are sold by private insurance companies.
Medicare Part D plans, also known as Medicare Prescription Drug Plans (PDPs), are used in conjunction with Medicare Part A and Part B to cover prescription drugs, which are not covered by Original Medicare.
You may have a Medicare Supplement Plan D and a Medicare Part D plan at the same time.
What Does Medicare Supplement Plan D Cover?
The chart below shows how the costs covered by Medicare Supplement Plan D compare to those covered by other Medigap plans.
|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 $2,700 in 2023. 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 $6,940 in 2023. Plan L has an out-of-pocket yearly limit of $3,470 in 2023.
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.
Medicare Supplement Plan D provides full (100%) coverage of the following costs.
Part A Deductible
Medicare Part A charges a $1,600 deductible for each benefit period in 2023, and it’s possible to incur more than one benefit period within the same year.
Medicare Part A Coinsurance
After you meet your Part A deductible, Medicare Part A requires daily coinsurance payments for inpatient hospital stays that can reach as high as $800 per day in 2023.
Medicare Part B Coinsurance and Copayments
Medicare Part B requires coinsurance payments typically equal to 20% of the remaining Medicare-approved amount for covered services and items once the you meet your annual Part D deductible.
First Three Pints of Blood
Original Medicare coverage of blood used in a blood transfusion begins only with the fourth pint.
Part A Hospice Care Coinsurance and Copayments
Medicare Part A requires small copayments for medications used for pain management and symptom control during hospice along with coinsurance payments for respite care.
Skilled Nursing Facility Care Coinsurance
Medicare Part A charges coinsurance payments for skilled nursing facility care that reach as high as $200 per day in 2023 before benefits run out altogether.
Foreign Emergency Medical Care
The final benefit area covered by Medicare Supplement Plan D is foreign travel emergency care.
Original Medicare only covers emergency care received outside the U.S. and U.S. territories in rare situations. Medicare Supplement Plan D covers 80% of the cost of such care, which is the maximum level allowed by Medigap plans.
What Is the Average Cost of a Medicare Plan D Plan?
The average Medigap Plan D premium in 2023 is $157 per month.2 The cost of Medicare Supplement Plan D can vary according to carrier and location.
It’s typical for insurance companies to offer discounts to women, non-smokers, married couples and more. Some insurance companies may allow you to pay your premiums on a quarterly or annual basis.
Where Can You Use Medicare Supplement Plan D?
Medicare Supplement Insurance plans do not have any network or geographical restrictions.
If a health care provider accepts Original Medicare, they will accept Medicare Supplement Insurance. You may use Medicare Supplement Plan D anywhere that you use Medicare Part A or Part B.
What Is Not Covered by Medicare Supplement Plan D?
In addition to the Medicare Part B excess charges mentioned above, Medicare Supplement Plan D also does not include coverage of the Medicare Part B deductible. Only two Medigap plans provide such coverage, and neither are open to new Medicare beneficiaries.
No Medicare Supplement Insurance plan offers coverage for dental, vision, hearing or prescription drugs. These extra benefits, which are not covered by Original Medicare, are typically found in Medicare Advantage plans.
When Can You Enroll in Medicare Supplement Plan D?
Technically speaking, you can enroll in Medicare Supplement Plan D at any time. But the best time to do so is during your Medigap Open Enrollment Period.
Your Medigap Open Enrollment Period begins the month you are enrolled in both Medicare Part A and Part B and are at least 65 years old and lasts for six consecutive months.
When you enroll in a Medicare Supplement plan during this time, you will be granted guaranteed issue rights. That means insurance companies are not allowed to use medical underwriting to charge you higher rates for a plan or deny you coverage.
After this enrollment period ends, insurance companies reserve the right to use physical exams and other health underwriting to determine your rates and may even decline coverage entirely.
If you are enrolled in a Medicare Supplement plan and wish to switch to a different plan outside of your Medigap Open Enrollment Period, you may drop your existing plan but will still have to go through the underwriting process for the plan you wish to purchase and may be denied from enrolling.
Medicare Supplement Plan D is guaranteed renewable, which means your insurer must renew your policy every year as long as you continue to pay your premiums.
What Is the Difference Between Medicare Supplement Plan G and Plan D?
Medicare Supplement Plan G is one of the most popular Medigap plans. Plan G offers the highest level of coverage available to new Medicare beneficiaries.
The primary difference between Plan G and Plan D is that Plan G offers coverage for Medicare Part B excess charges, while Plan D does not.
Medicare excess charges can be accrued when visiting certain health care providers who have a contract stipulation with Medicare that allows them to charge up to 15% more than the Medicare-approved amount in what is known as an “excess charge.”
Plan G and Plan D are nearly the same, aside from this excess charge coverage.
How Do I Enroll in Medicare Supplement Plan D?
Contact a licensed insurance agent to learn about the Medicare Plan D options available in your area.
You can get help comparing costs, confirming your eligibility and answering any questions you may have about Medicare Supplement Insurance.
AHIP. (Feb 2023). The State of Medicare Supplement Coverage. TRENDS IN ENROLLMENT AND DEMOGRAPHICS. www.ahip.org/documents/202301-AHIP_MedicareSuppCvg-v03.pdf.
Internal sales data provided by TZ Insurance Solutions LLC, 2023. This data is based on the Medicare Supplement Insurance policies TZ Insurance Solutions LLC has sold. It is not a comprehensive national average of all available Medicare Supplement Insurance plan premiums.