About AARP Medicare Supplement Benefits

Function

The AARP has a series of supplemental insurance plans that provide extra benefits not normally offered by regular Medicare. The plans are provided directly by a variety of insurance companies rather than by the government. You must already be eligible for coverage under Medicare to purchase any of the supplemental AARP Medicare plans.

Features

Supplemental insurance plans created by AARP pay for additional days when you have to stay in the hospital beyond what Medicare covers. These plans cover the remaining percentages of the price of doctor visits that Medicare doesn't pay, the cost of up to three pints of blood needed in emergency room or hospital stays, and fees charged for staying in a nursing home for up to 100 days per year.

Geography

Certain states throughout the U.S. have enacted laws that change the way AARP supplemental insurance plans operate and what benefits they provide. Contact the insurance department of your state government for information on how the plans differ if you live in the states of Wisconsin, Massachusetts or Minnesota.

Types

AARP supplemental plans are offered in both the Type A and Type B tiers, in the same way that regular Medicare is broken up. There are 12 distinctly different supplemental insurance policies offered between the two tiers that all have different deductibles and different time frames for when the deductibles must be paid before benefits are provided.

Considerations

Check with several different insurance companies before purchasing AARP supplemental benefits, as each provider is allowed to charge different premiums for the same plans. You must be at least 65 years old or have a disability to qualify for the supplemental plans. You must also have paid Social Security taxes for at least 10 years. Medicare is a special program that offers insurance benefits to the elderly or disabled as part of Social Security. The American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) offers extra insurance plans through several different companies that help to cover certain costs involved with health care that Medicare does not specifically cover.