USA - 03.11.2017
The 2017 Medicare Annual Election/Open Enrollment period opened Sunday October 16th and closes Thursday December 7th at 11:59 pm. During this time people on Medicare are able to enroll in, or change their current Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug (MAPD) HMO/PPO, or stand-alone Part D/drug plan. If you are satisfied with your current plan, and as long as it is renewing in 2018, you do not need to do anything.
People who are enrolled in a Medicare Advantage HMO/PPO plan after December 7th have a second bite at the apple to make a change during the MADP (Medicare Advantage Dis-enrollment Period) between 01/01-02/14. During that time you may return to Original Medicare as your primary payor and also purchase a stand-alone Part D/drug plan. You also may apply for a Medicare supplemental insurance policy to cover either all or some of your share of the Medicare Part A & Part B costs. Most people will have to pass carrier underwriting requirements for supplemental policies.
If you would like to shop and see what else is out there, now is the time, and I can help you with that at no charge. The following are the options most people have and what changes they could consider. People satisfied with employer/retiree coverage do not need to do anything.
1. If you own a Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug (MAPD) HMO or PPO plan you are able to keep it or select a different HMO/PPO plan or choose a stand-alone Part D plan. Choosing a stand-alone Part D/drug plan would automatically cancel you out of your current MAPD plan and put you back on Original/Straight Medicare Part A & Part B as your primary payor.
2. If you are currently on Original Medicare as your primary payor and own a Medicare supplement and a stand-alone Part D/drug plan you are able to switch to a different Part D/drug plan or leave original Medicare and choose a 2018 MAPD HMO/PPO plan.
3. If you do not own a MAPD HMO/PPO, or Part D/drug plan you can sign up for a Part D/drug or MAPD plan.There are no pre-existing medical conditions which would preclude you from enrolling in, or changing Part D plans. The only pre-existing condition which would preclude you from enrolling in or changing an MAPD HMO/PPO plan is end-stage renal disease (ESRD).
I have found it is a good idea to review the Part D/drug coverage plan you have every year to be sure the drug coverage that worked well in 2017 will work just as well in 2018. I am very happy to do the research and review those options for you. Just contact me.
The Medicare Open Enrollment period is not as relevant for people who own supplements. Supplemental insurance people in CA and OR have a Birthday Rule open enrollment the month of their birthday. During that time you are guaranteed to switch to a different carrier or plan regardless of pre-existing conditions as long as it is a like for like, or like for less switch. Other than that exception, and a few others, you would have to satisfy the new carriers underwriting requirements. People may apply for a fully underwritten supplemental plan at anytime.
The good news is that most people are very happy with their current Medicare choices. I want to help you keep it that way in 2018.
My office hours during the Open Enrollment will be between 9:00 & 6:00 PST Monday-Sunday.Please call me at (949) 489-2380 or cell (949) 697-9613 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to review your plan.
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