Aetna Medicare Supplement Review

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Aetna originally started in 1850 as an annuity fund and in 1853 separated to incorporate as Aetna Life Insurance Company. The name “Aetna” was derived from the active volcano Mt. Etna in Sicily. In 1861 they began paying dividends to policy owners and the massive devastation of the American Civil War sparked a huge demand for life insurance and the growth continued. By 1888 Hartford Connecticut became the home office for the next 44 years.

Pioneers of health insurance, Aetna became the first company to offer health insurance to their life insurance and accident policy holders in 1899, and in 1966 Aetna paid the very first Medicare claim in US history. In 1906 the San Francisco Earthquake brought 20 companies to their knees, and the Great Depression in 1929 did even more damage, but Aetna made it through both tragedies and more importantly were able to pay all the claims in full.

Aetna has been on the New York stock exchange since 1968 and today serves over 44 million people. They offer a vast portfolio of products including Medicare supplements, Medicare Advantage, individual and group health insurance, dental, prescription, group life, group disability and small Whole Life policies called Final Expense life insurance.

Aetna Health and Life Insurance branded their Medicare Supplement plans and were added to the Aetna family of companies in 2013. The product was originally offered by Continental Life Insurance Company of Brentwood, Tennessee beginning in 1983. Twenty two years later American Continental was established and they both later became part of Aetna in 2011. Both Aetna Health and Life Insurance and Aetna Life Insurance companies have earned an A (Excellent) rating by A.M. Best.

Aetna offers 3 types of Medicare plans: Medicare Supplement (Medigap), Medicare Advantage (Part C) and the Medicare prescription drug plan (Part D). The Aetna Senior Supplemental Insurance and other products alone are sold by over 30,000 licensed agents throughout the United States. These plans will help cover some of the health care costs that Original Medicare doesn’t cover. Enjoy the freedom to visit any doctor or hospital that accepts Medicare by choosing Medicare Supplement insurance. Prescription drug coverage (Part D) isn’t included, but stand-alone Part D plans are available.

Tobacco users can get non-tobacco rates during Open Enrollment. This can save a person hundreds per year on their premiums. You can apply for the Medicare Supplement up to 180 days prior to the date you want your policy to begin, however California and Oregon offer an additional 60 days called the Birthday Open Enrollment each year. It begins 30 days before your birthday and ends 30 days after your birthday. If you are a tobacco user your rate will be not be any more than a tobacco user during an Open Enrollment period which is a great reason to purchase the Aetna Supplement.  There a some many reasons that Aetna is one of the best Medicare Supplement companies.


The rates for Aetna’s Medicare are guaranteed for 12 months, you have 30 days to decide if you want to accept the plan, and the coverage will never change. If you decide not to go with the coverage, or you are declined the full amount that you paid with the application will be refunded including the application fee if any.

Aetna offers your choice of effective date other than the 29th, 30th, or 31st of each month. Because this is a Medicare Supplement you can apply for it throughout the year as long as your Medicare Parts A and B are active.

Some companies only offer the 1st of the each month, even if your prior coverage ends mid-month. This is an issue for some people who lose COBRA or Employer Group coverage at some time other than the last day of the month. By having the ability to start your Medicare Supplement the day after your other coverage ends benefits a person in two ways. First you don’t go one day without being  insured, and the other is you don’t have to pay for coverage that overlaps.

Another feature of Aetna is their household discount. The discount is offered in most states and the discount can vary slightly by state. The household discount can be applied to married couples, domestic partners or just two individuals who have lived in the same home like siblings or parents and children for at least 12 consecutive months or more.

To qualify for the discount, both people need to have either the Aetna Senior Supplemental Insurance policy or another company owned by Aetna like the American Continental supplement policy. Each person must be approved but can apply at different times. The plans can differ, so if Plan F is best for one person and Plan N works better for the other they will still qualify for the discount.

If you are seeking coverage and you are not in Open Enrollment or a Guaranteed Issue period, you will have to pass the medical underwriting. Aetna’s underwriting includes answering the health questions yes or no and falling within the height and weight guidelines. If any questions are answered yes, then the application will not be approved.

In addition to the medical questions, there will be a telephone interview confirming the answers on the application and possible clarifying medications that may or may not have been listed on the application. Aetna will also check the MIB (Medical Information Bureau) to clarify any conflicting or missing information.

Aetna offers plans A through N depending on the state if you are being medically underwritten or you’re in Open Enrollment, but only certain plans are offered during Guaranteed Issue Periods. Those plans include A, B, and F in all states and most have the HDF (high deductible F) and the HDG (high deductible G). You can only purchase plan N guaranteed issue in California and plan C in Vermont, New Jersey and Michigan.

If you have Power of Attorney (POA) for prospect or cannot legally sign without a POA, your application will only be acceptable during the Medicare Open Enrollment and Guaranteed Issue periods. If the applicant is not in of one of these situations and would otherwise be required to answer the medical questions, you should not apply for Aetna Medicare supplement plan.

Unfortunately not everyone will qualify for the Aetna Senior Supplemental Insurance. The following is an abbreviated list of common reasons an applicant is declined. This list is not complete. As with most other companies, there are many other reasons and situations not listed that someone can be declined.

• Any type of further evaluation, diagnostic testing or surgery that
has not been performed.

• Macular Degeneration (wet) requiring injections within the past 12 months.

• Atrial Fibrillation currently being treated with medication.

Diabetes with heart or artery blockage at any time.

• History of prostate cancer with a detectable PSA reading.

• Aneurysms that have not been surgically repaired.

• Osteoporosis with fracture (any type).

• Lung or respiratory disorders: use of oxygen or a nebulizer within

the past 24 months (including hospital/in home use).

• Lung or respiratory disorder with tobacco use.



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