It’s that time of year when you need to mark your calendar and set reminders so as not to miss your Medicare enrollment window. When shopping for a Medicare Advantage plan, you need to remember a few key dates.
As you navigate the various enrollment periods, it’s important that you take the time to review your current healthcare coverage. Your health and needs can change in a year, and the plan you chose last year might not be the best plan for you in the coming year. Do plan comparisons, not just for price but for benefits. If you’re not sure what you need or even want, contact a licensed insurance agent for guidance. Once you’ve settled on a plan, get ready for your enrollment period to begin.
Here are important dates NOT to forget.
First-Time Medicare Enrollment
Are you new to Medicare? Just turning 65? First off, happy birthday to you. Now, make note. You have a seven-month window around your birthday to enroll in Medicare health coverage. You can enroll starting three months before your birthday month, and you have until three months after your birthday month.
Annual Enrollment Period
The annual enrollment period or AEP is a BIG one and is quickly approaching. Every year from October 15 to December 7, you have the opportunity to review your plan and make any necessary changes. You can make changes to your current coverage or switch to a completely different plan. Your new coverage will go into effect on January 1, 2023.
Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment
This enrollment period is only for Medicare beneficiaries with a Medicare Advantage plan. This provides an excellent opportunity for those who selected a MA plan during the annual enrollment period but aren’t entirely satisfied with it. MA open enrollment gives you one last chance to get what you want and need. From January 1 to March 31, you can change your Medicare Advantage plan or cancel and return to Original Medicare.
In addition, this open enrollment period allows you to add Medicare Part D if you need prescription drug coverage.
Special Enrollment Periods
Sometimes things happen that are out of your control. And depending on what that situation might be, you may qualify for a special enrollment. Circumstances that typically allow for a special enrollment period include if you:
- Lost other creditable employer or retiree insurance coverage benefits
- Have both Medicare and Medicaid
- Moved out of your geographical service area
- Qualify for low-income prescription drug assistance
Don’t wait until it’s too late, or you’re having to be rushed to select a plan. Instead, start considering your options now, so you’re ready next month when the Annual Enrollment Period begins. Put these Medicare Advantage enrollment dates in your calendar now so you don’t forget!
If you don’t have an agent, feel free to contact us at VIPcare, and we’ll be happy to put you in contact with one of our preferred brokers. Your health really is our priority, and it begins with selecting a Medicare plan that’s right for you.