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If you have a Medicare health or prescription drug plan, Open Enrollment begins on October 15 and ends December 7 – this is the time you can make changes to your Medicare plan. Even if you’re happy with your current coverage, you may find something that’s a better fit for your budget or your particular health needs. Also, if you miss the deadline, you’ll have to wait a full year before you can make changes to your plan again.
Here are five important things every current and future Medicare beneficiary should do to prepare for Medicare Open Enrollment.
1. Review your Plan and Notices
Be sure to read any notices from your Medicare plan about changes for next year, especially your “Annual Notice of Change” letter. Look at your plan’s information to make sure your prescriptions and doctors are still covered under your plan.
2.. Focus on your Priorities
Do you need a new primary care doctor? Does your network include the specialist you want for an upcoming surgery? Is your new medication covered by your current plan? Take inventory of your health status and needs. This will help you determine if you need to make the switch.
3. Find out if you are Eligible for Aid
Learn about programs in your state to help with the costs of Medicare premiums, your Medicare Part A (hospital insurance) and Medicare Part B (medical insurance) deductibles, coinsurance and copayments and Medicare prescription drug coverage costs. You can do this by calling or visiting Bell & Associates Consulting Firm and we will help you figure this out.
4. Look At The Stars
The Medicare Plan Finder has been updated with the 2016 Star Ratings for Medicare health and prescription drug plans. Plans are given an overall quality rating on a 1 to 5-star scale, with 1 star representing poor performance and 5 stars representing excellent performance. Use the Star Ratings to compare the quality of health and drug plans being offered.
If you find that your current coverage still meets your needs, then you’re done. Remember, during Medicare Open Enrollment, you can decide to stay in Original Medicare or join a Medicare Advantage Plan. If you’re already in a Medicare Advantage Plan, you can switch back to Original Medicare
These are just a few simple ways to get a jump start on your Medicare Open Enrollment prep! Bell & Associates Consulting Firm provides free, non-biased Medicare reviews and assistance. For more information, you can, call us at (662) 260-4635, or contact us and we’ll be more than happy to help!