Medicare Supplement plans and Medicare Advantage plans are not the same things. While both Medicare Supplement and Medicare Advantage plans bring additional benefits to Original Medicare, they work very differently. Medicare Supplement plans, also known as Medigap plans, work as a secondary to Original Medicare (Medicare Part A and Part B). The plan will only pay after Original Medicare has paid its portion. These plans have no networks, no restrictions, and no referrals to see specialists.
Medicare Advantage plans, also known as Medicare Part C, on the other hand, become your primary coverage over Original Medicare. They often require you to follow a strict network of doctors and have higher out-of-pocket costs. However, they often provide additional benefits.
These additional benefits provided by Medicare Advantage plans often include dental, vision, hearing, and prescription drug coverage, as well as transportation assistance and gym memberships. However, not every plan or every carrier is required to offer these additional benefits.