Medicare Advantage plans in Pennsylvania
Independence Blue Cross (Independence) offers affordable Medicare Advantage plans in Philadelphia, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, and Montgomery Counties. Compare plan types below to see which one best meets your needs.
You may enroll in a Medicare Advantage Plan during any valid election period, including the annual election period, a special election period, or your initial election period. For more information about these enrollment periods, see our easy-to-understand explanation of Medicare Basics.
Medicare Advantage plan types
Independence offers three types of Medicare Advantage plans: Personal Choice 65SM PPO plans, Keystone 65 HMO plans, and the Keystone 65 Focus Rx HMO-POS plan. See below for more details.
What are Medicare Advantage plans?
Medicare Advantage plans, also known as “Medicare Part C,” were created to complement the benefits of Original Medicare (Parts A and B). These plans are offered by Medicare-approved private insurance companies (like Independence) and must follow rules set by Medicare.
What do Medicare Advantage plans in Pennsylvania cover?
Medicare Advantage plans include all the benefits of Medicare Parts A and B plans. They may also include extras like vision, dental, and hearing coverage.
Do Medicare Advantage plans cover prescription drugs?
Most Medicare Advantage plans do cover prescription drugs, but some do not. Generally, people need to get their Part D drug coverage as part of their Medicare Advantage plan.
Comparing Medicare Advantage plans
Independence offers three types of Medicare Advantage plans: HMO, PPO, and HMO-POS.
- With an HMO (health maintenance organization) plan your costs are usually lower, but you are required to use only in-network health care providers. Browse our Keystone 65 HMO plans.
- With an HMO-POS (health maintenance organization with point-of-service) plan, the HMO plan also provides some limited benefits for providers who are not in network. You still save money by using in-network providers. Explore our Keystone 65 Focus Rx HMO-POS plan.
- A PPO (preferred provider organization) plan generally has higher premiums but gives you the flexibility to see providers who are not in network. You still save money by using in-network providers. Browse our Personal Choice 65SM PPO plans.
How much do Pennsylvania Medicare Advantage plans cost?
The cost of Medicare Advantage plans varies widely based on a number of factors. When deciding on a plan, there are a few things to weigh:
- Whether the plan charges a monthly premium (some plans offer premiums as low as $0, although members must still pay their Part B premiums)
- The copayments or coinsurance for each type of service or visit, whether in network or out of network
- Whether the plan has an annual deductible for medical services and/or prescription drugs
- The maximum out-of-pocket limit for how much you might have to pay for medical care and/or prescription drugs each year
- Whether the plan has any network restrictions
- Whether your doctors and specialists are in the plan’s network
- Whether the plan covers prescription drugs, and whether it covers your specific medications
- Whether the plan offers additional benefits such as vision, dental, or hearing coverage
The cost of Medicare Advantage plans changes from year to year and varies from plan to plan. When shopping for a Medicare Advantage plan, it’s important to consider both what each plan covers and how much it costs.
For a more comprehensive explanation of the factors that can affect the cost of a Medicare Advantage plan, see our How much does Medicare cost? page.
What is the difference between a Medicare Advantage plan and a Medicare Supplement plan?
- A Medicare Advantage plan includes Original Medicare (Parts A and B) plus additional benefits.
- A Medicare Supplement (or Medigap) plan is a type of insurance you buy separately to cover expenses that Medicare Parts A and B don’t cover.
For a more detailed explanation of the differences between these two types of plans, visit Medicare Advantage vs. Medigap (Medicare Supplement plans).
Is a Medicare Advantage plan right for you?
Medicare Advantage plans are ideal for people who:
- Would like to pay a single monthly premium for all of their health insurance needs (although it’s still necessary to pay the Part B premium separately)
- Prefer to pay lower monthly premiums, even if copays and coinsurance might be higher than in a Medicare Supplement plan
- Would like their health plan to cover additional things like hearing, dental, and vision expenses, fitness memberships, and more.
Website last updated: 3/23/2023