SOURCE: American Association for Medicare Supplement Insurance

Medicare Supplement Insurance Association

April 04, 2016 10:18 ET

Medicare Supplement Insurance Policy Costs Vary By Up to 68 Percent

Monthly Costs for 65 Year Old Range From $118 to $444 According to Medicare Supplement Insurance Association's 2016 Price Index

LOS ANGELES, CA--(Marketwired - April 04, 2016) - A 65-year old male purchasing Medicare Supplement insurance will pay anywhere from a low of $126-per-month to a high of $444-per-month according to the just-published 2016 National Medicare Supplement Price Index.

"Costs for Medicare Supplement insurance, also called Medigap, vary significantly for both men and women," reports Jesse Slome, director of the American Association for Medicare Supplement Insurance (AAMSI), which released the first phase of the study that compares rates for the top-10 metropolitan areas.

According to the Price Index, a 65-year-old woman will pay as little as $118-per-month in San Antonio, TX to as much as $444 monthly if she lives in Manhattan, NY. The Association study examined costs and reported percentage differences between the low and high rates. "For a 65-year old male, the average difference was 39 percent," Slome notes. "For 65-year-old females, the average difference was 34 percent but in some cities the spread between the lowest and highest costs is as much as 48 percent."

Some 12.2 million Americans were protected by Medicare Supplement insurance in 2015 a significant increase compared to 2010 when 9.7 million owned a Medigap policy. "More Americans value the significant benefits and advantages these policies provide," Slome shares. "With 10,000 Americans turning 65 every day, the number of Medigap policyholders will continue to grow."

The Association examined monthly rates for Medicare Supplement Plan F, the most commonly purchased coverage. "Some 66 percent of individuals choose Plan F," Slome shared. Private insurers offer Medigap policies but the government has standardized coverage by assigning a specific letter to make it easier to comparison shop. Three states that had standardized policies before the federal law passed follow different rules.

"Prices vary and no single insurer was consistently the least expensive nor the most expensive," Slome says the study found. "Consumers who want the best coverage for the lowest cost would be well served by working with a knowledgeable Medicare Supplement insurance agent who can educate and help you with the comparison shopping."

Highest Costs in New York City; Lowest Costs In San Antonio, Texas

Among the top-10 U.S. cities, the highest cost for Plan F coverage was $444-per-month for a 65-year-old male living in Manhattan, New York according to the Price Index. The lowest cost was $126-per-month for a male living in San Antonio, Texas. For a 65-year-old female, the highest cost was $444 and the lowest was $118 for the same cities.

Jesse Slome is director of the American Association for Medicare Supplement Insurance, established to provide consumer awareness and education, marketing support and networking opportunities for professionals who market Medigap insurance.

The organization maintains the nation's largest online directory of local independent Medicare Supplement insurance professionals at www.medicaresupp.org or call AAMSI at 818-597-3205 for information.

Slome is a leading national advocate for consumer awareness and financial and insurance product education. He has authored over 25 comprehensive consumer books and guides, and recently established the National Advisory Center for Short Term Care Information. He is the author of the soon-to-be published Essential Guide to Short-Term Care Insurance Protection.

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