The Annual Enrollment Period (AEP) is the time of year when Medicare Beneficiaries can make changes to their Medicare Advantage plans and prescription drug plans. Making the most beneficial choice during the open enrollment is important to beneficiaries’ health care. Creating a checklist is always an easy way to start.
Here are some tips on getting started:
o First, do you want to keep your same doctors?
Some doctors only take original Medicare and others participate in Medicare Advantage plans such as your HMO & PPO type plans.
o Do you have any pre-existing conditions?
Medicare covers you regardless of your health conditions however to be eligible for a Medi-gap plan outside of your open enrollment period, the beneficiary will have to answer health questions.
o Are you taking any prescription drugs?
Each prescription plan (Part D) may vary by formulary list as well as pharmacies. So, getting on the right Part D plan may have more to do with the drug you take and the pharmacy you select. So, make sure to check both.
Some plans offer lower cost-sharing on certain drugs if the beneficiary uses mail order.
Taking a few minutes to answer a couple of questions can often make the selecting process a little bit easier when choosing a Medicare plan during the enrollment period. It is also important to review your current coverage during the annual enrollment period because Medicare Advantage plans and Prescription Drug Plans can change some benefits from year to year.