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Mark Farrah and Associates releases an annual report on Medicare supplement trends. Below, we have summarized the information for you to provide a brief update on the Medicare supplement market.
The Medicare Supplement Market
As of December 31, 2016, Medicare supplement enrollment was nearly 12.6 million, which is 6% growth over the end of 2015. According to the report, many Medicare supplement carriers experienced yet another year of membership growth.
Total in-force policies amounted to 11.85 million in 2015, and increased to about 12.57 million at the end of 2016. That is an aggregate growth of 718,418 covered lives during that period.
In terms of standardized plans, the number of beneficiaries enrolled in the most popular plan – Medicare supplement Plan F – increased by 367,967. Plan F enrolled almost 6.9 million Medicare supplement members and accounted for 55% of the market.
However, beginning January 1, 2020, Plan F will no longer be an option for newly eligible Medicare enrollees. As a result, supplemental plans covering the Part B deductible can no longer be purchased. Beneficiaries who already have an existing Plan F policy in 2020 will not lose that coverage, but since the risk pool will decrease, the Plan F premiums will likely increase.
As a result of this policy change, industry stakeholders expect more plans will begin to offer Plan G. This plan is very similar to the Plan F with one minor difference — it does not cover the Part B deductible ($183 in 2017). The expectations have proven correct in 2016 as Plan G added over 364K members, a growth rate of 4%, becoming the second most popular plan type.
Here is the market share breakout for the top 10 Medicare supplement providers and “others.”
- UnitedHealth Care — 34%
- Mutual of Omaha — 10%
- HSCS — 5%
- Anthem — 5%
- Aetna — 4%
- CNO Financial — 3%
- Cigna — 2%
- Humana Group — 2%
- BCBS of MA — 2%
- BCBS of MI Group — 1%
- Others — 32% (Comprises 4.06 million enrollees)
As roughly 75 million Americans of the Baby Boom generation are beginning to enter retirement, this presents an increasing opportunity for health insurers offering Medicare Supplement plans. With currently 55 million Medicare eligible, the Medicare supplement market continues to grow, and insurers consistently diversify their senior market portfolios to leverage opportunities across all product lines.
GoMedigap is proud to be a part of this market that is in the business of helping people. In 2017, we are excited to help even more people find the best coverage that suits their unique needs at the best rate available. If you’d like to review your options and rates from 30+ top providers, please give us a call at (800) 310-2550 and one of our agents will be happy to assist you.