Medicare Advantage Plans are health plans approved by the federal government and run by private companies. These plans are sometimes referred to as Medicare Part C. Medicare Advantage Plans offer equal benefits to traditional Medicare plans while also providing extra benefits such as prescription drug coverage, dental and vision benefits, and etc. For this reason, advantage plans are not supplemental insurance.
Unlike, traditional Medicare most advantage plans have provider networks, some of the most common types are:
- Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) – Offers low to no copayment for doctor office visits and no deductibles. However, you are required to receive a referral from your Primary Care Doctor before seeing a specialist, and to receive full benefits, you are must use doctors and hospitals that are within your network.
- Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) – These plans also offer low copayments usually slightly higher than those of an HMO but allow freedom of choice when choosing a doctor or hospital as long as they are part of the PPO network.