If you are planning a vacation this summer, you should probably review your coverage before you pack your bags. Here are the most important things you should know regarding your health care coverage when traveling.
If You Have Original Medicare:
If you have original Medicare and are traveling within the United States, you can receive care by a doctor or hospital that accepts Medicare. You will still receive basic coverage even if you don’t have any secondary coverage.
If you are traveling abroad, Medicare does not generally provide coverage outside the United States. If you do need emergency care while in the United States, but the nearest hospital is in another country, Medicare will cover those services.
If you have a Medicare Advantage Plan:
If you have a Medicare Advantage Plan and are traveling within in the United States, you may not have coverage outside of your network. Your specific plan determines if you have coverage provided while traveling. Some plans will cover you out of network in an emergency, while others will not cover anything.
If you have a Medicare Advantage Plan you may have coverage outside of the United States, depending on the plan you choose. Since Medicare Advantage Plans are all designed by the insurance carrier, each plan is different. If you plan to travel abroad, please call SBS and we can find out if you have coverage outside of the United States.
If you have a Medicare Supplement:
If you have a Medicare Supplement and are traveling within the United States, you will be able to use all of your normal benefits with any doctor or hospital that accepts Medicare. Your plan will be accepted regardless of the carrier.
If you are traveling abroad and have a Medicare Supplement, coverage will depend upon your plan letter. Plan letters C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, M and N all provide coverage abroad. This coverage is for 80% of all charges up to a lifetime limit of $50,000 after a $250 deductible. Medicare will not provide any coverage after the first 60 days of your trip.
Other important travel information:
Planning a cruise vacation? Medical services received while on a cruise ship are covered only if the ship is in a United States port or no more than six hours from a United States port.
Medicare will pay for emergency services in Canada if you are traveling a direct route, without unreasonable delay, between Alaska and another state, and the closest hospital that can treat you is in Canada.
Some Medicare Advantage Plans will automatically dis-enroll anyone who travels outside of the plan’s network for more than six months. This can be for either travel inside or outside the United States.
As always, call 1-800-627-2768 with any questions!