Compare medical payments coverage

MedPay coverage can be a useful supplement to your health insurance in a car accident.

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You probably have health insurance, but it may not cover all of your medical costs from an auto accident. Medical payments coverage can help fill in the gaps.

What’s included with medical payments coverage?

Medical payments coverage, or med pay, helps you with your medical costs resulting from a car accident — no matter who’s at fault.

It covers you and your passengers and can pay for such expenses as:

  • Ambulance fees
  • Surgery
  • Funerals
  • Dental care
  • Prosthetic limbs
  • Hospital visits

Medical payments coverage doesn’t only apply to auto accidents. It can also protect you outside of your vehicle, such as when you’re walking or riding your bike.

Does MedPay come with a deductible?

Med pay doesn’t come with a deductible. In fact, you can use it to pay for your health insurance deductible or copays after an auto accident. The deductible is what you’ll pay before your insurance company will pay a claim.

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Why should I buy medical payments coverage?

If you already have car insurance and health insurance, you might be wondering why you need medical payments coverage. Doesn’t health insurance and med pay pretty much cover the same thing?

Though there will be overlap between the two, they don’t provide the same coverage. In fact, there are many costs your health insurance may not cover, such as prosthetic limbs, ambulance fees and funeral expenses. Medical payments coverage will take care of those costs. It can also pay for your health insurance deductible or copays.

If you live in Main or New Hampshire, you’re required to have medical payments coverage.

How much does medical payments coverage cost?

Adding medical payments coverage to your insurance policy typically costs around $5 a month. In total, you’ll probably pay less than $100 a year.

How do I buy medical payments coverage?

Your current insurance provider will offer medical payments coverage — contact them for more details.

Ask an expert: Is MedPay coverage worth it?

Farmers Insurance

Kirby George

Farmers, Licensed Insurance Agent

Medical payments cost about a dollar per $1,000 in coverage.

What if [drivers or passengers] get hurt and don’t have health insurance? Can they afford a $10,000 ER bill?

Medical payments coverage vs personal injury protection

Med pay is similar to personal injury protection in that it covers medical costs after an accident. The policies differ in many ways, however, such as:

  • Med pay doesn’t have deductibles or copays. PIP does.
  • PIP covers more costs — like lost income and psychiatric services.
  • Both are mandatory in different states, but PIP is required in more states.

Medical payments vs health insurance

On the surface, medical payments and health insurance might seem like they cover the same thing. But if you look deeper, you’ll find that there are gaps in your health insurance policy that medical payments will fill in.

For example, a typical health insurance policy will cover a stay in the hospital, but it might not cover the ambulance ride to get there if the provider deems the ambulance wasn’t medically necessary. Other situations that med pay can cover that your health insurance usually doesn’t include funeral costs and injuries sustained by a passenger in your car.

Med pay can also be used toward your health insurance deductible and copays. If you have a health insurance plan with a high deductible and high copay, medical payments coverage can save you money.

The cost of medical payments insurance largely depends on the limit you choose. Med pay limits are typically $1,000, $2,000, $5,000, $10,000 and $25,000, which can result in a monthly cost of $2 to $37. The lower your limit, the lower your monthly cost.

Case study: How to pay for medical bills after a car accident

While driving to work, Michelle is rear-ended by another driver who wasn’t paying attention when Michelle had to slam on her brakes because a car darted in front of her. Unfortunately, the accident was bad enough that Michelle is transported to the hospital by ambulance.

After Michelle recovers and is discharged from the hospital, the bills from her stay start coming in. She panics when she learns that her health insurance won’t cover the ambulance ride. Fortunately, she opted for medical payments insurance when obtaining car insurance.

Her med pay will cover the ambulance fee, as well as her steep deductible of $2,500 and high copays. Because of Michelle’s medical payments insurance, she will have no out-of-pocket expenses.

Bottom line

Medical payments coverage can be a useful add-on to protect you from unexpected medical costs. As a bonus, it doesn’t cost too much more per month. Compare your options to find the best price on car insurance before making any final decisions.

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