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Sticker Shock as Sicker Patients Dump Medicare Advantage Plans

April 24, 2019, 9:26 AM

Sicker baby boomers joining traditional Medicare after leaving one of the popular private health plans providing similar benefits could face a costly and unexpected surprise.

Patients leaving Medicare Advantage for better access to preferred doctors and higher cost medications are learning they may have missed their window to purchase supplemental Medigap insurance that covers out-of-pocket expenses in traditional fee-for-service Medicare.

It’s a little-known problem that can make it harder for some of Medicare’s most vulnerable enrollees, like those with multiple chronic conditions, to better manage their high-cost ailments.

That’s because federal law and 46 states allow Medigap insurers to deny ...