Open Enrollment for Medicare Advantage

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The 2012 Open Enrollment Period (OEP) for Medicare Advantage gets underway on October 15.

Although the annual OEP used to extend through the end of the calendar year, this year’s Open Enrollment Period will end on December 7. This means you’ll have a shorter Medicare Enrollment Period than you’re accustomed to from previous years. Even so, you’ll have over seven weeks this year to take advantage of the opportunities Open Enrollment can provide.

During Open Enrollment, you have the option of switching from Original Medicare (Medicare Part A and Medicare Part B) to a Medicare Advantage plan. Call MedicareMall toll-free at (877) 413-1556 to learn about Medicare Advantage plans available in your area.

If you’re presently enrolled in Medicare Advantage, your current plan will end on December 31 of this year.

Though your plan may be renewed for next year, there’s no guarantee that will happen.

Your current plan’s sponsor has several other options for next year. It can:

    • Change your benefits
    • Change your premiums
    • Not renew your plan
    • Leave your service area – in effect, discontinuing service to you

If your plan has chosen one of these options for 2013, you should have received an Annual Notice of Change (ANOC) by the end of September. If you received an ANOC, it’s important to look it over carefully before deciding what action you should take during Open Enrollment.

Your options are to:

    • Continue with your current plan if it’s possible and if all changes are acceptable to you
    • Leave Medicare Advantage and return to Original Medicare
    • Enroll in a new Medicare Advantage plan
    • Switch from a Medicare Advantage plan without drug coverage to a Medicare Advantage plan with drug coverage
    • Switch from a Medicare Advantage plan with drug coverage to a Medicare Advantage plan without drug coverage

Whatever your current health coverage may be, you should look at the annual OEP as an opportunity to evaluate your current healthcare situation.

Although you’re not required to make any changes during this or any OEP, Open Enrollment offers you a great opportunity to evaluate your current health coverage in order to determine whether any changes are advisable.

An annual evaluation of this sort is always recommended. Simply put, the coverage that was right for you a year ago may not be right for you going into a new year. Some premiums may go up from year to year. Your medical situation and your needs can change dramatically from one year to the next. These considerations and others may reveal that continuing with your current health plan for another year may not be in your best interests.

It may simply be that you want coverage that didn’t seem as important or necessary a year ago. Maybe during the past year you’ve had an experience that’s shown you all too well that Original Medicare isn’t enough. Or maybe you’re just not sure whether it’s time to make a change, and you’d like some expert advice before committing to a Medicare Advantage plan for 2013.

If this is the case, contact MedicareMall now and we’ll be glad to assist you in making such an important decision about your health and finances.

Medicare Advantage Plans Index
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