When you turn 65, you are flooded with packets, cards, booklets, invitations and phone calls offering information or assistance in choosing Medicare options. Offers and solicitations like these usually only increase worry and confusion. Fortunately, if you know some basic points and select a qualified agent, you can have a life-long, worry-free plan that fits your situation and health needs. Choosing without the proper information could impact your out of pocket costs for health care, reduce your provider network, and also limit your ability to choose certain plans later on if you should desire to change.
October 15th marked the beginning of Medicare Open Enrollment for the 2018 year. Have you made your selections yet? Below you’ll find a few tips from the pros at Trilogy Health Services to help you through the process.
Review your choices each year.
Medicare health and drug plans can make changes each year - things like cost, coverage, and what providers and pharmacies are in their networks. Open Enrollment (October 15th to December 7th) is when you should review all of the new information and change Medicare health plans and prescription drug coverage for the following year to better meet your needs.
Understand your Medicare choices, and don't let the language confuse you!
The variety of Medicare related options can cause great confusion when choosing what is best. Take a look at our previous blog article, Understanding Medicare, for a breakdown of Medicare and Medicare Advantage Plans.
Know our qualifying events!
Some events make it possible to change your plan outside of the Open Enrollment window. For example, did you know that if you have a Medicare Advantage plan and wish to switch to Medicare upon admission to a long-term care facility you will not be penalized?
We’ve said it before, but it’s important to get balanced information from credible sources. Do not only rely on a company or representative who is selling you a policy. Insurance companies and representatives stand to benefit financially from your enrollment in certain plans. Make sure you are informed by seeking information from a neutral party.
Don't be afraid to ask questions.
Your health coverage is important, so ask all the questions you can! Visit Medicare.gov or call 1-800-MEDICARE for more information. If you are a resident or family member of one of our residents, please feel free to ask a member of the business office at your campus to go over your plan with you!