Many people buy supplementary insurance for Medicare as standard practice. It is not required, but extra coverage helps with all basic needs.
Health insurance is confusing for everyone, but those on Medicare face a whole different system. It can be hard to tell what is supplemental and what is required. No one has to sign up for supplemental insurance, but it has become standard for most people to buy extra coverage anyway. This is because regular Medicare does not offer all the services a person needs.
A standard Medicare plan offers limited coverage, so many people turn to supplementary insurance for Medicare. This fills in the gaps in coverage and allows most people to be protected against costly medical bills. People buy plans like Medicare Part B which helps pay for doctors visits and outpatient costs or Medicare Part D which pays for prescriptions. Other forms of supplemental insurance may available to provide for special circumstances that other plans do not offer or for dental and vision services.
Some people who use Medicare choose to buy a plan through a separate insurance company. These Medicare Advantage plans usually provide benefits that the general plans do not. This allows a person to tailor a plan to their needs. Extra coverage is not always the norm with these plans because they may include services that are offered in Part D or Part B plans already. Veterans may not need supplementary insurance for Medicare either because they also receive special benefits.
It is expected that most people with Medicare will at least purchase Medicare Part B. This makes it possible to regularly check in with a doctor and provides emergency services. You do not have to buy, but it is possible to find plans for reasonable prices.