According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the state of Iowa is home to more than 3 million people, with almost 570,000 qualifying for Medicare. As of 2015, 86,749 residents are enrolled in Medicare Advantage in Iowa’s 99 counties. An additional 71,192 Iowans’ plans include Part D prescription drug coverage.
According to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), Iowa will have 61 Medicare Advantage plans in 2022, up from 55 last year. Access to those plans will vary based on where you live in the Hawkeye State, but nearly every Medicare member (97%) will have access to at least one private plan.
Nationwide, signups for Medicare Advantage are on the rise, with private plans now accounting for over 40% of all Medicare enrollment. In Iowa, enrollment in Medicare Advantage represented 22% of the Medicare population in 2020, per an analysis from the Kaiser Family Foundation.
Medicare Advantage has become popular partly because it covers everything that Original (Parts A and B together) covers — by law — as well as additional benefits that vary by plan. Advantage is sold by private carriers. Large insurance companies in Iowa include UnitedHealthcare/AARP, Humana and Aetna.
The CMS is reporting that the average premium for Medicare Advantage in Iowa is just under $9 a month in 2021. The lowest-priced option comes in at $0. Plan options are unique to zip code, but 97% of Iowans will have access to at least one Advantage plan without a monthly premium in 2022.
Medicare Advantage plans don’t have to charge a premium, but some do. And note that you’ll always pay your premiums for Original (usually just Part B), even if your Advantage plan doesn’t have a premium.
CMS, state data fact sheet released September 29, 2021
Kaiser Family Foundation, “A Dozen Facts About Medicare Advantage in 2020″
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