Will Medigap plan F become a 'death spiral'?

Guy4201

New member
Joined
Jan 26, 2019
Medigap plan F is being phased out for new enrolees as of Jan 1, 2020. There is some discussion that plan F will then become a 'death spiral' insurance plan. The sickest individuals currently in plan F will remain in that plan, not switching to another plan because of higher premiums due to their medical condition, health costs for plan F will increase forcing premiums to increase faster than other medigap plans.

Anyone can switch from plan F to plan G, but the premium each person pays is determined by medical underwriting once past the age 65 open enrollment period. So sick individuals currently in plan F answering 'yes' to some of the health questions in the medigap application will pay much higher premiums then those who answer 'no' to the health questions, and may then choose to stay in plan F resulting in plan F having a higher percentage of sick folks then other plans - thus the 'death spiral'.

Is this a realistic scenario? Comments?
 

Dudewho

New member
Joined
Sep 24, 2015
Location
NORTH CAROLINA
Yes, this will happen.
Some will not pass underwriting and will not be able to switch. They can stay with the higher cost F Plan they have, just use Medicare and pay the copays, deductibles and coinsurance or switch to an Advantage plan.
 

JB in SC

New member
Joined
Apr 2, 2018
Location
Upstate
Plan F has the largest number of participants of any supplement Plan, over 50% last I read. Will it go up? Yes, over a period of years as people die the pool gets smaller. And some with serous illnesses will not be able to switch if they wanted to. One never knows what might happen in five or ten years, it would not surprise me if insurers will be forced to allow a one time switch at some point in the future. It's a bargain at twice the price if a person has a serious illness or chronic condition.
 

GreenSky

Member
Joined
Oct 26, 2016
Location
Las Vegas
Plan F has the largest number of participants of any supplement Plan, over 50% last I read. Will it go up? Yes, over a period of years as people die the pool gets smaller. And some with serous illnesses will not be able to switch if they wanted to. One never knows what might happen in five or ten years, it would not surprise me if insurers will be forced to allow a one time switch at some point in the future. It's a bargain at twice the price if a person has a serious illness or chronic condition.
Plan F is never a bargain. Plan G is usually at least $300 less expensive and the only difference is paying a deductible of $185. If the deductible goes up Plan F must go up at least as much to cover.

I might have 5% of my clients on Plan F. The rest are on Plan G, Plan N, or the High Deductible F.

Bottom line is Plan F is too expensive to be a viable option. And when it goes away to new beneficiaries next year the pool will become older and sicker - prices will rise more than other plans.

Rick
 

JB in SC

New member
Joined
Apr 2, 2018
Location
Upstate
Plan F is never a bargain. Plan G is usually at least $300 less expensive and the only difference is paying a deductible of $185. If the deductible goes up Plan F must go up at least as much to cover.

I might have 5% of my clients on Plan F. The rest are on Plan G, Plan N, or the High Deductible F.

Bottom line is Plan F is too expensive to be a viable option. And when it goes away to new beneficiaries next year the pool will become older and sicker - prices will rise more than other plans.

Rick
Plan G was not offered when I enrolled and Plan F was not headed to the chopping block. Plan G required underwriting in my state for my wife when she enrolled last year along with a six month waiting period. She had been diagnosed with colon cancer. We were very fortunate she didn't have a health crisis during the waiting period.

The current difference in price of my Plan F and a Plan G is a bit over $60 a year.

I retired early, I've paid more for a month of crappy coverage than I have for a year of Plan F. So I guess it seems like a bargain to me.
 

GreenSky

Member
Joined
Oct 26, 2016
Location
Las Vegas
Plan G was not offered when I enrolled and Plan F was not headed to the chopping block. Plan G required underwriting in my state for my wife when she enrolled last year along with a six month waiting period. She had been diagnosed with colon cancer. We were very fortunate she didn't have a health crisis during the waiting period.

The current difference in price of my Plan F and a Plan G is a bit over $60 a year.

I retired early, I've paid more for a month of crappy coverage than I have for a year of Plan F. So I guess it seems like a bargain to me.
I suspect the difference between F and G is more than $60 a year. You need to compare to other companies. (And don't forget Plan N).

If you're sure you won't be able to move your plan then you are stuck where you are. But I suggest you contact an independent agent who specializes in Medicare to see if you might be able to move. I don't think I'm licensed in SC but if nothing else I can give you an idea of what might be available to you and your wife. If you wish I can refer you to someone that can help.

Rick
 

JB in SC

New member
Joined
Apr 2, 2018
Location
Upstate
My wife has a Plan G so she’s okay. I doubt very seriously I’ll be able to get underwritten and even if I did, the six month wait may be a issue. I’ll check anyway. The difference was $228 a year, I was looking at the wrong Plan F (three are offered).
 

Ken N Tx

Older than Dirt !
Joined
Nov 12, 2014
Location
Texas
My wife has a Plan G so she’s okay. I doubt very seriously I’ll be able to get underwritten and even if I did, the six month wait may be a issue. I’ll check anyway. The difference was $228 a year, I was looking at the wrong Plan F (three are offered).
Contact GreenSky (Rick), he can work for you!!
 

GreenSky

Member
Joined
Oct 26, 2016
Location
Las Vegas
My wife has a Plan G so she’s okay. I doubt very seriously I’ll be able to get underwritten and even if I did, the six month wait may be a issue. I’ll check anyway. The difference was $228 a year, I was looking at the wrong Plan F (three are offered).
If you have a current plan there are no waiting periods. I trust your agent told you this.

There are many more than 3 plans available.

Rick
 

JB in SC

New member
Joined
Apr 2, 2018
Location
Upstate
If you have a current plan there are no waiting periods. I trust your agent told you this.

There are many more than 3 plans available.

Rick
Three with the same insurer, I know there are at least a dozen offered by other insurers. Looking at multiple Plan F premiums they are all within a few dollars currently. I’m going to attempt to switch to a Plan G at some point.
 

GreenSky

Member
Joined
Oct 26, 2016
Location
Las Vegas
Three with the same insurer, I know there are at least a dozen offered by other insurers. Looking at multiple Plan F premiums they are all within a few dollars currently. I’m going to attempt to switch to a Plan G at some point.
I don't believe I have a SC license but regardless I'm happy to help you sort through various companies. I am able to quote almost everyone.

But rarely is Plan F a good value but that's my take on it. If there isn't enough savings from F to G then obviously F is the better value. (But look at Plan N).

Rick
 

JB in SC

New member
Joined
Apr 2, 2018
Location
Upstate
I don't believe I have a SC license but regardless I'm happy to help you sort through various companies. I am able to quote almost everyone.

But rarely is Plan F a good value but that's my take on it. If there isn't enough savings from F to G then obviously F is the better value. (But look at Plan N).

Rick
There’s savings in a Plan G but a Plan N would be much better. The rub is getting underwritten with pre existing conditions.

I had no six month wait for my F but my wife did with her G, same company (BCBS). I get an 11% discount from posted rates.

Second or third opinions are welcome.
 

GreenSky

Member
Joined
Oct 26, 2016
Location
Las Vegas
There’s savings in a Plan G but a Plan N would be much better. The rub is getting underwritten with pre existing conditions.

I had no six month wait for my F but my wife did with her G, same company (BCBS). I get an 11% discount from posted rates.

Second or third opinions are welcome.
Send me a private message and I'll be happy to provide you with information and quotes. The only time there is a pre-existing exclusion is when there is no prior coverage. So this is NOT a worry.

There is no problem getting a policy even with COPD unless there is oxygen. Typical issues such as diabetes, HBP, etc. are almost never problems.

Again, if you send me your phone by private message I'll be happy to give you (if nothing else) a 2nd opinion.

Rick
 


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