What Is Medigap Plan B? What You Need to Know

Medigap Plan B provides the basic Medigap benefits, plus coverage for the Medicare Part A deductible.
Alex Rosenberg
By Alex Rosenberg 
Edited by Holly Carey Reviewed by Debra Nuckols

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This influences which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list of our partners and here's how we make money.

MORE LIKE THISMedicareInsurance

Medigap Plan B is a Medicare Supplement Insurance plan that helps cover certain out-of-pocket expenses that remain after Medicare Part A and Part B pay for services.

Medigap Plan B adds one additional benefit on top of the basic benefits provided by all Medigap plans: coverage for the Medicare Part A deductible.

Still deciding on the right carrier? Compare Medigap plans

How it works

Medigap plans help pay for the out-of-pocket costs associated with Original Medicare, including copays, coinsurance and deductibles. If you have a Medicare Advantage plan, you can’t also buy a Medigap plan.

There are 10 standardized Medigap plans available in most states (except Massachusetts, Minnesota and Wisconsin, which use different standards). The plans differ in terms of coverage for services, out-of-pocket limits and premium costs.

What Medigap Plan B covers

Here’s what Medigap Plan B covers, according to Medicare.gov:

  • Part A coinsurance and hospital costs up to an additional 365 days after Medicare benefits are used up.

  • Part A deductible.

  • Part A hospice care coinsurance or copayment.

  • Part B coinsurance or copayment.

  • Blood transfusion (first three pints).

What Medigap Plan B doesn’t cover

Here are the benefits Medigap Plan B doesn’t cover that are included in some other plans:

  • Part B excess charges (if a provider is permitted to charge more than Medicare’s approved amount and does so).

  • Skilled nursing facility care coinsurance.

  • Emergency care during travel outside the U.S.

Additionally, all Medigap plans, including Plan B, sold to new Medicare members don’t cover the following:

  • Part B deductible (since 2020, new Medicare members can’t buy any plan that covers the Part B deductible, although existing members may own older plans that do).

  • Long-term care (like non-skilled care you get in a nursing home).

  • Private-duty nursing.

Shopping for Medigap plans? We have you covered.

MEDICARE SUPPLEMENT, or Medigap, is private health insurance that covers “gaps” in traditional Medicare coverage. Compare options from our Medigap roundup.

Best for Medigap plan options

Best for member satisfaction

Best for premium discounts

Best for extra benefits

How much does Medigap Plan B cost?

The government regulates Medigap plans, but you buy your plan from a private health insurance company, which sets the price you pay. Prices vary as a result of factors such as age, location and tobacco use. In a representative North Carolina ZIP code (27406), monthly Medigap Plan B premiums for a 65-year-old nonsmoker range from $113 to $318.

To find out what Medigap Plan B would cost you, visit Medicare.gov.

For the smoothest enrollment experience and lowest prices, sign up for a Medigap plan during your Medigap open enrollment period.

This period happens only once. It starts once you’re 65 and enrolled in Medicare Part B, and lasts for six months. (If you're still working after 65 and covered by a group employer plan that is deemed creditable coverage, your six-month period starts after you’ve ended active employment or no longer have that insurance.)

Medigap policies are cheapest and easiest to get during this open enrollment period because insurance companies aren’t allowed to factor your health or medical history into your price. After the period ends, the prices may go up or you may be denied coverage due to your health status or medical history.

In some states, insurance companies sell Medigap plans to those under 65 who are living with a disability and are eligible for Medicare. You can find more information through your State Health Insurance Assistance Program, or SHIP.

If you have questions about Medicare, visit Medicare.gov or call 800-633-4227 (TTY: 877-486-2048).

Compare alternative plans

Get details on Medicare Supplement Insurance options


Medigap Plan

Basic benefits

Basics plus some extras

Highest coverage

Lower premiums, but higher copays

Lowest premiums — partial coverage

No longer for sale to new Medicare members

Still deciding on the right carrier? Compare Medigap plans

Get even more financial clarity with the NerdWallet app
Track your budget and see all of your finances together in a single place.
Get more smart money moves – straight to your inbox
Sign up and we’ll send you Nerdy articles about the money topics that matter most to you along with other ways to help you get more from your money.