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New Report People With Medicare Supplement Coverage Three Times Less Likely To Struggle With Medical Bills

posted by AHIP

on May 6, 2021

AHIP study shows latest trends in “Medigap” enrollment and demographics

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Health insurance providers are committed to ensuring that all Americans have affordable, high-quality coverage and equitable care.  For many Medicare-eligible Americans, Medicare Supplement insurance (Medigap) plays a vital role in protecting them from out-of-pocket costs that traditional Medicare does not cover.  Using the latest available data sources, America’s Health Insurance Plans’ (AHIP) Center for Policy and Research released today a report on Medicare Supplement coverage options, demographics of enrollees with Medicare Supplement policies, and the most recent enrollment trends.

Key takeaways from today’s report include:

  • Only 4% of enrollees with Medicare Supplement coverage reported having difficulty paying medical bills in the last 12 months, compared to 12% of fee-for-service (FFS) Medicare enrollees without Medicare Supplement coverage.
  • Between December 2018 and December 2019, the national Medicare Supplement enrollment increased from 14 million to 14.5 million enrollees.
  • Among fee-for-service (FFS) Medicare enrollees without additional insurance coverage (such as Medicaid, employer-provided insurance, etc.), 50% had Medicare Supplement coverage in 2019.
  • Medicare enrollees with Medicare Supplement insurance were older than the general Medicare population: 43% of Medicare Supplement policyholders were 75 years old or older compared with 35% for all Medicare enrollees.

As today’s report demonstrates, millions of America’s seniors continue to choose Medicare Supplement insurance to help address their health care costs,” said Jeanette Thornton, AHIP senior vice president of product, employer, and commercial policy.  “Medicare Supplement insurance is one of the many innovative ways health insurance providers are helping protect people from high out-of-pocket costs not covered by traditional Medicare and budget for medical expenses.

Sources for the 2021 report are the 2019 National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) data, 2019 California Department of Managed Health Care data, and 2018 Medicare Current Beneficiary Survey (MCBS) results.

Please click here to read the full report.


About AHIP

AHIP is the national association whose members provide coverage for health care and related services to hundreds of millions of Americans every day. Through these offerings, we improve and protect the health and financial security of consumers, families, businesses, communities and the nation. We are committed to market-based solutions and public-private partnerships that improve affordability, value, access, and well-being for consumers. Visit www.ahip.org for more information.