Medicare Annual Enrollment: To change or not to change Medicare plans
By: Lupe Bruneman, HCMBA
Ph: (786) 322.8633
So, you’ve heard it’s the Medicare Annual Enrollment period in South Florida. How do you know? You’ve seen the health plan TV infomercials and commercials over dinner, the radio ads, the billboard ads while you drive, not to mention you’ve received the additional mail, emails, and, let’s not forget, the phone calls. What is all this hype about? Should you be doing something? Talking to someone? Are you feeling anxious yet? PLEASE DO NOT FEEL ANXIOUS!! Let me explain why.
First, if you already have Medicare Part A and B and you are enrolled in a Medicare Advantage HMO or PPO plan, you have until December 7th to speak with someone regarding the new benefits for 2023. If you don’t know what type of plan you have, check your health plan ID card, and look for any of these terms: HMO, PPO, SNP, or POS. Second, even if you miss the December 7th deadline, you will have a second opportunity to make a change to your plan from January 1 to March 31.
Additionally, if you already have a plan, and it is working for you, YOU DON’T HAVE TO DO ANYTHING!! It is perfectly fine for you to keep the plan you have as long as it is meeting your healthcare needs. At the very least this means the following:
- You are able to access your preferred doctors whenever you need them, i.e., a Primary Care Physician, specialists, and hospital facilities.
- You are getting the medications you need at a cost you can afford
- You are able to access additional services, such as getting prescription glasses and dental work, and transportation.
If any of these services are missing from your current plan, then you should absolutely seek out a licensed and certified insurance broker who can help guide your choice to change to a plan where you will gain benefits and not lose. Whoever you elect to trust with this guidance should conduct a thorough Needs analysis to ensure they understand exactly what you need because your situation is unique to you. You may speak with friends and family who tell you about their benefits, but Medicare plans have many moving parts, and there is no ONE SIZE FITS ALL!! You must consider not only your health but also your financial situation, which can be impacted positively or negatively by the plan you choose.
Remember to insist on a Needs analysis where the insurance broker is reviewing your drugs and ensuring the doctors you want to see are “in-network” with the plan you choose. If you need help, call us at Advocate Health Advisors, and we can help connect you with a licensed broker to help guide your medical plan decision. Our number is 786-322-8633. We hope this information has been helpful!