Supplemental health insurance refers to coverage in addition to a basic health care plan that pays health care costs not covered by the primary health care plan, as explained by ObamaCareFacts. Supplemental health plans are sold by private companies, and although they do not cover the majority of medical costs, they help pay some of the health care costs not covered by the primary health care plan, such as copayments, coinsurance and deductibles.
Supplemental health plans are combined with comprehensive health care insurance to help pay outstanding medical bills that are not settled by the primary insurance, notes Medicare.gov. There are a number of supplemental health insurance options for private individual and family health insurance and for public health options such as Medicare.
To select a supplemental insurance plan, consider the existing primary insurance plan, the available plans and the specific medical needs to be covered. One type of supplemental plan, hospital indemnity insurance, provides fixed cash benefits for covered services, including hospital stays for emergencies and outpatient services, according to AARP. There are basic supplemental medical plans that provide fixed benefits for covered preventive medical care.
Generally, Americans under 65 do not need supplemental insurance and should simply obtain a major medical plan. However, individuals and families can fill gaps in their health care coverage using supplemental fixed-benefit health plans and short-term health plans. Supplemental plans are recommended for medical options not covered on most major medical plans, such as dental and vision-only plans, and for plans that limit coverage depending on geographical location, as stated by ObamaCareFacts.