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  • Writer's pictureBrad Gunning

What is Medicare SELECT?

Updated: May 22, 2019

In our experience, Medicare SELECT plans are the least popular of the Medicare options (regular Medigap and Medicare Advantage are far more common). For starters, Medicare SELECT is not available in all states. But what exactly is Medicare SELECT?

What is Medicare SELECT?

Medicare SELECT is a type of Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap). But whereas with a Medigap policy you can choose to go to any doctor or hospital that covers Medicare, with a Medicare SELECT policy you are limited to a network of providers. If you don't get your medical treatment from a Medicare SELECT approved hospital, then your Medicare SELECT policy won't pay for your costs. This is similar to a Medicare Advantage policy, which limits you to a network such as an HMO or PPO. We prefer the freedom of choice traditional Medigap affords in this regard.

Aside from limiting you to a network, however, the Medicare SELECT plans provide the same standardized benefits as their corresponding Medigap plans (ie, Plans A through N). Since you're limited to a network of hospitals, Medicare SELECT plans are less expensive than Medigap plans. So if you're interested in a Medigap plan, but don't travel and your hospital is in the Medicare SELECT network, it can be a good alternative to Medigap.

That said, for the most part we tend to recommend either a traditional Medigap plan or a Medicare Advantage plan.

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