Qualifications for supplemental plans with pre-existing conditions are reviewed and required to be disclosed. During enrollment, some private insurance carriers of Medicare Supplement plans will impose a waiting period for pre-existing conditions. As individuals reach the age of 65 and enroll in Medicare Parts A or B, they are required to disclose all pre-existing health conditions. Medicare will cover all health conditions that the Medicare participant had prior to becoming eligible for the program.
Medigap operates separately from Medicare, treating pre-existing health conditions differently. Medicare Supplement plan carriers may impose a waiting period of 6 months before the condition is covered under the selected Medicare Supplement plan. For this reason the Medicare participants need to understand how the two Medicare programs work together. During the waiting period, Medicare may cover specific medical costs related to the pre-existing conditions, with cost differences becoming an out of pocket expense for the Medicare participant.
If the Medicare participant has a pre-existing condition, and is approaching the age of 65 during the open enrollment period, this may be the best time to purchase the Medigap Medicare Supplement health plan. The open enrollment period allows 6 months from the date of turning 65 and enrolling into Medicare Part B. Insurance companies cannot impose a waiting period to the Medicare participate. Guaranteed issue rights may exist, where insurance companies cannot charge a higher premium for a pre-existing condition.
Other circumstances, if the Medicare participant is changing the Medigap Medicare Supplement plan and has six months of uninterrupted coverage, the insurance company cannot impose the normal waiting period for coverage to begin again. Pre-existing conditions are considered hypertension, diabetes, chorionic pulmonary disease.