What Should You Consider During the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period?
What Should You Consider
During the Medicare
Annual Enrollment Period?
By Joel Lourie, President & CEO of Lourie Life & Health
The Medicare Annual Enrollment period runs from October 15 – December 7. This is a very important time of the year when you should review your Medicare plan and make changes where necessary. We have worked with thousands of clients in the Midlands to help them navigate this process and find a plan that is suitable to their needs and budget.
When evaluating your current coverage, there are a few questions you should ask yourself to determine if a change is necessary. I have detailed the three major Medicare product types below with information about what you should consider. And remember, you can contact our office and we can do a Medicare review for you and change your plan if needed, at no cost.
Generally, most of our clients will remain in the same plan for many years. There are a few reasons to consider changing. These decisions are driven by factors such as whether all your doctors are still accepted by your plan. Also, you may consider changing plans if your prescription drugs have changed, or the costs have increased significantly.
Two other considerations are whether your current Medicare plan has extra benefits like dental and vision and if you have been happy with the level of customer service you receive. If you are satisfied in the above-mentioned areas, chances are you should remain in your current Medicare Advantage plan.
Prescription Drug Plan
If you have a stand-alone Prescription Drug plan, you will usually stay in the same plan unless you have prescriptions that are not covered by your plan or those costs have gone up significantly. Changing plans does require notifying your pharmacist.
If you have a Medicare Supplement plan, you can move to another Medicare Supplement plan at any time of the year. Typically, you will want to change your plan if you think you are paying too much and want to see if there is a similar option with a lower premium. To do this, you will have to answer a few health questions to be accepted into a new plan.
Also, if the monthly premium of your current Medicare Supplement plan becomes too expensive, you may want to consider switching to a Medicare Advantage plan. In most cases, Medicare allows you a one-year trial right to go back to the Supplement plan you had previously.
Joel Lourie is President & CEO of Lourie Life & Health. His agency specializes in Medicare and health insurance. The company operates in the Southeast with headquarters in Columbia, SC. Mr. Lourie also spent 18 years in the SC House and Senate and has been recognized by numerous organizations for his work on behalf of healthcare, seniors, children, and education.