Medicare Open Enrollment is from October 15th to December 7th. This is the only time of year when you can make changes. Here your options:
- Do nothing
- Move from Medicare Advantage to traditional medicare. Medicare allows you to see any doctor or hospital in the country that accepts Medicare. Good if you live part of the year in two different places.
- Change Medicare Advantage plans. If your current plan doesn’t include doctors or hospitals that you want to use.
- Change Medigap plans (insurance that supplements traditional Medicare). If you are in an Advantage program you wouldn’t need and cannot buy Medigap coverage
- Change part D prescription drug plans or sign up for a drug plan or drop a drug plan. consider if the drug formulary changes or does not cover a medication.
Evaluate based on your full cost – add up premiums, deductibles and estimated co-payments & co-insurance. What is your out-of-pocket maximum? Use the optimal insurance deductible calculator on my website.
Consider if your coverage has changed, if you have moved, if you have a new doctor or medical facility or if you’d like a higher or lower deductible. And with everything, be sure to review your options. Bottom line, it’s important that you are still able to see your medical providers and receive your medications. And here’s a good look at: Medicare Vs. Medicare Advantage: How To Choose.
Initial enrollment for Medicare is a seven month window that starts three months before the month in which you turn 65 and ends three months after your birth month. Please note that unless you meet certain conditions such as having group health insurance coverage (employer must have 20 employees), you will pay a lifelong penalty on Medicare coverage if and when you enroll after your initial enrollment period. So, be sure to visit the Medicare website to make sure you have the right information.
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