A Step-By-Step Guide for How to Choose a Medicare Plan

There are different types of Medicare plans available to most beneficiaries. Use this guide to help you choose the right Medicare plan for your needs.

Are you trying to decide which is the right Medicare plan for your needs? Do you want to find Medicare coverage that could help you save money on some of your health care costs?

To help you decide on a Medicare plan, we’ve put together this easy step-by-step guide.

Step 1: Determine which Medicare plan coverage option you want

Medicare beneficiaries could potentially only be enrolled in Medicare Part A (hospital insurance). Medicare Part B (medical insurance) is optional, as are several other types of Medicare coverage.

Some of the types of Medicare coverage you can consider include:

  1. Medicare Part C (Medicare Advantage)
  2. Medicare Part D (prescription drug plans)
  3. Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap)

The first step in choosing a Medicare plan is to determine which of these types of plans is best for your situation.

Medicare Part C

Medicare Advantage plans offer all the same benefits as Medicare Part A and Part B combined into one plan. On top of that, some Medicare Advantage plans may offer benefits not covered by Medicare Part A and Part B (also called Original Medicare).

How it works with Original Medicare: While you will still remain enrolled in Original Medicare, your Medicare Advantage plan will be used as your primary form of coverage.

You might consider this type of Medicare plan if: You aren’t entirely satisfied with Original Medicare coverage and want to have additional health insurance benefits.

Medicare Part D

Medicare Part D plans provide coverage for many prescription drugs. There are many different types of Medicare Part D plans, and each one offers its own formulary, which is the list of drugs covered by the plan.

How it works with Original Medicare: Part D plans are used alongside Original Medicare or a Medicare Advantage plan that doesn’t provide drug coverage. The Part D plan provides the prescription drug coverage that Original Medicare and some Medicare Advantage plans do not.

You might consider this type of Medicare plan if: You want to have some help paying for your prescription drug costs.

You can compare Part D plans available where you live and enroll in a Medicare prescription drug plan online when you visit MyRxPlans.com.

Medicare Supplement Insurance

Medigap plans can help provide coverage for some of the out-of-pocket expenses that are tied to Original Medicare. These can include Medicare deductibles, coinsurance, copayments and more.

There are 10 different types of standardized Medigap plans available in most states, and each type of plan offers its own combination of benefits.

How it works with Original Medicare: A Medigap plan works in conjunction with Original Medicare and helps to pay for some of Medicare’s out-of-pocket costs.

You might consider this type of Medicare plan if: You wish to have less uncertainty with your out-of-pocket health care costs.

You may not be enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan and a Medicare Supplement Insurance plan at the same time.

Step 2: Narrow down the type of plans that are right for you

There are several different types of Medicare Advantage plans. These plan types include Medicare HMO plans, Medicare PPO plans and others.

Learn more about the different types of Medicare Advantage plans to help you decide which one might be the best fit for you.

Medicare Part D plans can also come in different types of formats, and they can also vary in the participating pharmacies that are included in each plan’s network and what drugs the plan covers.

As previously mentioned, there are 10 different types of Medigap plans in most states, each with its own combination of standardized benefits it may offer.

You can compare what each type of Medigap plan covers and find out which plans are available where you live.

Step 3: Find out which types of Medicare plans are available in your area

Medicare Advantage, Medicare Part D and Medicare Supplement Insurance are all sold by private insurance companies, which means not every plan will be available in each location.

You can only enroll in plans that serve the area or state in which you reside (depending on the type of plan you are interested in), so you’ll need to find out which plans are available in your area.

To find out about the Medicare Advantage plans available where you live, you can call to speak with a licensed insurance today.

Compare plans today.

Speak with a licensed insurance agent


Step 4: Decide on a Medicare plan

Now that you’ve determined the type of plan you want and found out which plans are available in your area, it’s finally time to decide which one is the best fit for your needs.

A licensed insurance agent will be able to go over the details of each plan with you, including the benefits, terms and cost of each plan. They can even walk you through the enrollment process should you choose to join.

Getting the right Medicare plan is vital to your overall health care strategy, and with just a little bit of research you can choose a Medicare plan that is best suited for both your health and your budget.



About the author

Christian Worstell is a senior Medicare and health insurance writer with MedicareAdvantage.com. He is also a licensed health insurance agent. Christian is well-known in the insurance industry for the thousands of educational articles he’s written, helping Americans better understand their health insurance and Medicare coverage.

Christian’s work as a Medicare expert has appeared in several top-tier and trade news outlets including Forbes, MarketWatch, WebMD and Yahoo! Finance.

Christian has written hundreds of articles for MedicareAvantage.com that teach Medicare beneficiaries the best practices for navigating Medicare. His articles are read by thousands of older Americans each month. By better understanding their health care coverage, readers may hopefully learn how to limit their out-of-pocket Medicare spending and access quality medical care.

Christian’s passion for his role stems from his desire to make a difference in the senior community. He strongly believes that the more beneficiaries know about their Medicare coverage, the better their overall health and wellness is as a result.

A current resident of Raleigh, Christian is a graduate of Shippensburg University with a bachelor’s degree in journalism.

If you’re a member of the media looking to connect with Christian, please don’t hesitate to email our public relations team at Mike@tzhealthmedia.com.

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1 10-minute claim is based solely on the time to complete the e-application if you have your Medicare card and other pertinent information available when you apply. The time to shop for plans, compare rates, and estimate drug costs is not factored into the claim. Application time could be longer. Actual time to enroll will depend on the consumer and their plan comparison needs.