Medicare open enrollment – also known as Medicare's annual election period – runs from October 15 through December 7. During this window, Medicare plan enrollees can reevaluate their coverage and make changes or purchase new policies if they want to do so. For most Americans, Medicare eligibility goes hand in hand with turning 65, but some people become eligible for Medicare earlier.
Be aware that while most Medicare beneficiaries receive Medicare Part A without a monthly premium, some must pay for it. Take note that most prices for 2022 will not be available until late October or November, so you'll want to talk with your financial professional once they're published in case you need to make plan adjustments.
The Medicare world is constantly changing. Thanks to COVID-19, we're seeing some of the most significant changes in the industry yet.
Telemedicine and digital health technology are becoming an established part of medical practices and are likely to persist after the COVID-19 pandemic. Before the pandemic, 15,000 Medicare patients received telemedicine services weekly. By April 2020, that weekly number grew to nearly 1.7 million. Between mid-March and mid-October 2020, over 24.5 million patients (approximately 40% of all Medicare patients) had received a telemedicine service.
During the annual open enrollment period, you can make a variety of changes, including the following that don't involve medical underwriting:
- Switch from Medicare Advantage to Original Medicare or vice versa
- Switch from one Medicare Advantage plan to another
- Switch from one Part D prescription plan to another
- Join a Medicare Part D plan, although a late-enrollment penalty might apply
- Drop your Part D coverage altogether (Re-enrolling in a later year will include a late-enrollment penalty if you're not maintaining other creditable drug coverage)
You want to get the most value and protection out of your Medicare coverage, and you need to plan for any upcoming changes. As your dedicated team, reach out to us today, and we'll help you get the information you need to make better-informed decisions.
This document is for educational purposes only and should not be construed as legal or tax advice. One should consult a legal or tax professional regarding their own personal situation. Any comments regarding safe and secure investments and guaranteed income streams refer only to fixed insurance products offered by an insurance company. They do not refer in any way to securities or investment advisory products Insurance policy applications are vetted through an underwriting process set forth by the issuing insurance company. Some applications may not be accepted based upon adverse underwriting results. Death benefit payouts are based upon the claims paying ability of the issuing insurance company. The firm providing this document is not affiliated with the Social Security Administration or any other government entity.
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