Submitted by Iora Primary Care.
Are you not feeling the “advantage” in your current Medicare Advantage plan? Perhaps you’re unhappy with the network’s providers or pharmacy options, or just feeling regret about the plan you selected in the Fall? If so, you’re not alone. Fortunately, however, if you enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan, now may be the perfect time to make an additional switch.
Each year, seniors on Medicare have two opportunities to change their plans. And while most are familiar with the initial Fall Annual Enrollment Period, Oct. 15- Dec. 7, many are less familiar with the newer Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period, given its only recent introduction just last year.
Happening now through March 31, this new period provides a second chance to the approximately 22 million people currently on Medicare Advantage plans to change their selections. However, unlike the Fall Annual Enrollment Period, enrollees are permitted to make only one change during this time, so making an informed decision is all the more important.
What changes can I make now during the new Open Enrollment Period?
For those on Medicare Advantage plans, this new period presents a limited, three-month opportunity (Jan. 1 – March 31) to compare, reassess and make changes to an existing Medicare Advantage plan. (Note: If you’re enrolled in Original Medicare (Part A and Part B), the new open enrollment period doesn’t apply to you).
During this new period, Medicare Advantage enrollees can:
- Switch to another Medicare Advantage plan.
- Drop your Medicare Advantage plan and return to Original Medicare.
- Make changes to your Part D prescription drug coverage, if:
- Switching from an MA plan without prescription drug coverage, to another Medicare Advantage plan that includes it.
- Dropping Medicare Advantage to return to Original Medicare, in which case you may enroll in a stand-alone Part D prescription drug plan.
As a policyholder of a Medicare Advantage plan, you are able to make one switch to your policy during this time, and your chosen coverage goes into effect on the first day of the next month from when you make the change. For example, if you switch Medicare Advantage plans in March, then your new coverage becomes effective April 1.
How do I choose a plan or doctor that’s right for me?
Along with switching plans, the current Open Enrollment Period is a great opportunity to evaluate if your current primary care provider is working for you. However with so many options, it’s often helpful to sit down with an insurance representative or agent who can help you choose a plan that best suits your lifestyle and goals.
At Iora Primary Care, a local doctor’s office for adults on Medicare, our Patient Enrollment team can connect you to trusted insurance agents that can help explore your options and make the decision that’s right for you. With an office conveniently located in Puyallup, our team is happy to help answer your questions and refer you to someone to help you find the right plan for you.
For more information or to schedule a tour of Iora Primary care, call 253-300-1392 or visit: ioraprimarycare.com/puyallup.Print This Post