It's Time to Schedule Your Annual Review of Medicare Plans
Just as your annual physical is important to your health, an annual review of your health care coverage is critical to your financial health. And for people with Medicare, that time is quickly approaching.
Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period, which runs from Oct. 15 through Dec. 7 each year, is when you can change your Medicare Part D Prescription Drug plan for the next year, and if you have Medicare Part C (Medicare Advantage), you can also change plans during this time. If you have a Medicare Supplement plan, you may also want to review it at this time, so you’re aware of any changes that could affect your coverage or premium.
Why Is An Annual Open Enrollment Review Important?
Each year, insurance companies can make changes that impact your coverage and what you pay for it. With Part D Prescription Drug coverage in particular, a change could mean the difference between paying a few bucks for a prescription and shelling out hundreds each month. For example, your insurance company could drop a drug you take from its formulary — a list of drugs covered in the plan and how the plan covers them — or move it to a different tier. But often, people will switch to a different Part D Prescription Drug plan thinking they’ll save money because its premium is lower. The cost of one month’s worth of one drug that’s not on your plan’s formulary could exceed an entire year’s worth of your monthly premiums. This is a common mistake, but the plans with the lowest premiums are not always the better financial choice. Watch this video to learn more about how comparing Medicare Prescription Drug plans can save you money.
What Can You Do During Medicare’s Open Enrollment?
- Join a Medicare Part D Prescription Drug plan
- Drop a Part D Prescription Drug plan
- Switch from one Medicare drug plan to another Medicare drug plan
- Change from a Medicare Advantage plan back to Original Medicare
- Change from Original Medicare to a Medicare Advantage plan
- Switch from one Medicare Advantage Plan to another Medicare Advantage plan
- Switch from a Medicare Advantage plan that offers drug coverage to a Medicare Advantage plan that doesn’t offer drug coverage
- Switch from a Medicare Advantage plan that doesn’t offer drug coverage to a Medicare Advantage plan that does
What You Need for Your Annual Review
If you’re already enrolled in Medicare (age 65 or older), you’ll need to gather a few things to prepare for your annual review of your Medicare plans during open enrollment. Use this checklist to gather what you need for your annual review.
If you’re turning 65 soon and have questions about enrolling in Medicare, use this checklist to gather what you need to enroll in Medicare.
Get Help With Your Open Enrollment Annual Review
Because Medicare can be complicated, having someone who specializes in Medicare health insurance and prescription drug plans review your coverage can help you get the coverage you need and potentially find ways to save you money — while also avoiding mistakes. It also benefits you to have someone who can review a variety of plans, instead of someone who is contracted only with one company or a few. Your Futurity First advisor can review your plan, compare plans from a variety of companies and find a plan that suits your needs and budget.