Aetna Medicare Supplement Review
With well over 150 years of insurance history, Aetna is a leader in the healthcare space with plans that cover everything from dental expenses to funeral costs.
Aetna also has Medicare Supplement insurance, and many of our clients here at Sams/Hockaday enjoy it! However, if you’re new to Medicare or have an interest in Aetna, you may be wondering what our team thinks of their Medicare plan.
Note: This article was originally published on August 13, 2019. It was updated on November 9, 2020 to include the new Medicare costs for 2021.
Before we get into our full Aetna Medicare Supplement review, we’d like to share that all Medicare Supplements are standardized by the government.
Each company must offer the plan benefits established by the government. For example, a Plan G sold by Aetna must have the same exact benefits as a Plan G sold by any other company.
In general, the two main differences between Medicare Supplements are the cost of the plan and the underwriting (or health questions).
What is Aetna?
Providing traditional and consumer directed health care insurance and related services for over 23 million people, Aetna, an American managed healthcare company, is one of the largest insurance providers in the United States. Their home base is located in Hartford, Connecticut.
Originally founded in 1853 as a life insurance company, Aetna was named after Mount Etna, the most active volcano in Europe at that time, which ended up being a foreshadowing of the company’s eventual financial success.
The company later expanded and began offering other lines of insurance coverage. Aetna entered into managed healthcare and created a health maintenance organization (HMO) subsidiary in 1975.
During the 1990s, the company merged with US Healthcare and acquired other companies such as NYLCare Plans and Prudential Healthcare, which increased their client base by leaps and bounds.
Staying true to its namesake, Aetna continued to erupt (pun intended!) and currently has a market capitalization of over $35 billion and serves nearly 39 million consumers with health benefits and services within three business segments: Health Care, Group Insurance, and Large Case Pensions.
These segments offer coverage in many areas including healthcare, group life, disability, Medicaid, Medicare, dental, and pharmaceuticals.
Aetna’s customer base covers a wide span of clients including individuals, employer groups, college students, part-time and hourly workers, health care providers, governmental units, labor groups, and expatriates.
Aetna continues to expand its product portfolio and market reach in order to stay within the top insurance providers in the country.
How is Aetna Rated?
Aetna is rated A (Excellent) by A.M. Best Company for overall financial strength and ability to meet ongoing obligations to policyholders. This is the third highest rating out of 16 total ratings.
ConsumersAdvocate rated Aetna 9 out of 10 for not only its inexpensive coverage options, but because they promote health and wellness in communities. Aetna also has efficient technology and great customer service.
Medicare Supplement Plan Types Offered by Aetna
Aetna currently offers the following Medicare Supplement plans in Illinois:
- Plan A
- Plan B
- Plan F
- Plan G
- High Deductible Plan F
- Plan N
You can read more about what is included in these plans here: Medicare Supplement Insurance in Illinois.
Plan F is no longer available for new Medicare enrollees on or after January 1, 2020. However, if you were already on Medicare before January 1, 2020, you can still purchase a Plan F at any time.
How Does an Aetna Medicare Supplement Work?
Since all Medicare Supplements are regulated by the government, an Aetna Medicare Supplement works the same as any other Medicare Supplement.
Once you understand how one Medicare Supplement works, you understand how they all work, which is nice!
All Medicare Supplements add to your existing Medicare Part A and B coverage, which is also referred to as Original Medicare. A Medicare Supplement will cover things like copays, deductibles, and coinsurance. In addition, many plans offer international travel coverage.
In exchange for those benefits, you pay a premium, which can be paid monthly, quarterly, semi-annually, or annually.
Even though Aetna offers 6 different Medicare Supplement plans, we only recommend about 3 of them due to the coverage they provide. These include Plan F, G, and N.
Aetna Plan F
Remember that the benefits of a Plan F from Aetna are the same as a Plan F from any other company.
Many individuals aging into Medicare love a Plan F because it covers the remaining Medicare-approved charges. Yep – all of them. You don’t have to deal with any copays, coinsurance, or deductibles when you have a Plan F.
A Plan F from Aetna will cover your hospital and doctor coinsurance, up to 100 days in a skilled nursing facility, your hospital and doctor deductibles, excess charges from doctors who don’t accept Medicare, and even 80% of foreign travel emergency charges.
Medicare Supplement Plan F is the best coverage you can buy, which also explains why it has the highest premium.
Remember: if you are first eligible for Medicare after January 1 of 2020, you won’t be able to purchase a Plan F.
Aetna Plan G
A Plan G from Aetna will pay for everything a Plan F pays for except the deductible at the doctor. This is also called the Medicare Part B deductible (Part B is your medical insurance).
The Part B deductible isn’t much – it’s $203 in 2021.
If you do the math, you know that a Plan G offers $203 less in coverage than a Plan F. However, a Plan F almost always costs over $203 more than a Plan G.
Insurance companies – including Aetna – charge a premium for a Plan F, and many seniors don’t like that as it can feel like they are overpaying.
To be transparent, almost all of our clients here at Sams/Hockaday who have a Medicare Supplement choose a Plan G. Is it our favorite plan and offers great value for the excellent coverage you get.
Aetna Plan N
An Aetna Plan N offers the same coverage as a Plan G aside from three exceptions:
- You will have a copay of up to $20 every time you see the doctor
- You will have a copay of up to $50 every time you visit the ER – if you’re admitted to the hospital, that copay is waived
- If you see a doctor who does not accept Medicare (pretty rare) you may be charged an excess of up to 15% more than the Medicare-approved amount
Plan N offers some savings in premium, so some individuals take on the copays and possibility of excess charges in order to save money in premiums when compared to a Plan G.
Most of our clients do not choose a Plan N, but it does seem to be gaining popularity versus years past.
The premium of an Aetna Medicare Supplement depends on a couple factors, including:
- Which plan you want (F, G, or N)
- Your age (younger is cheaper)
- Your zip code (Decatur will be cheaper than Chicago)
- Your gender (females are less expensive than males)
- Whether or not you are a tobacco user (tobacco users are generally more expensive)
For a Plan F, Aetna is not currently as competitive as other companies in the central Illinois area, though many enjoy the recognized brand name and choose to pay more because of it. In addition, different companies take rate increases at different times, so Aetna may become competitive again in the future.
Aetna is very competitive if you prefer a Plan G, and it’s actually the lowest rate out of all available companies for a Plan N!
That’s why it pays to have a local agent who keeps tabs on your rates for you! (We do that!)
To give you an idea of what Aetna Medicare Supplements cost, here are some examples for a 65-year old female who does not use tobacco and lives in Decatur, IL. These quotes are accurate as of September 1, 2019 and are subject to change.
- Plan F: $142.61/mo
- High-Deductible Plan F: $55.48/mo
- Plan G: $103.38/mo
- Plan N: $73.14/mo
What We Think of Aetna Medicare Supplements
At Sams/Hockaday, we’ve been offering the best Medicare Supplement options in Illinois for decades. Aetna is a strong option, not only for its financial stability and experience, but for its very competitive Medicare Supplement rates.
While Aetna is not as competitive as it used to be for a Medicare Supplement Plan F, the other plans (G and N) are very well priced. Aetna is an excellent, well-known company with a lot of history, and we wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it.
To see what an Aetna Medicare Supplement would cost you today, you can request a free Medicare planner using the link below. If you prefer, you can schedule an appointment online with one of our local agents.
You can also call our office at 217-423-8000. We will be glad to assist you in any way we can!
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