» Medicare Open Enrollment Period Coming Soon – Get Ready

October 5, 2022 — The Open Enrollment Period for Medicare starts soon, October 15, and runs through December 7. During this time you can join, switch, or drop a plan. Your coverage will begin on January 1 (as long as the plan gets your request by December 7). The Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment period runs from January 1 – March 31 each year. That’s when if you’re enrolled in a Medicare Advantage Plan, you can switch to a different Medicare Advantage Plan or switch to Original Medicare.

By now you should have received materials from your supplemental medical insurance company announcing changes for 2023. So this is the time to start thinking about what to do. If you are eligible for Medicare but not enrolled, do so now to avoid penalties and/or no coverage. Or, get ready to sign up for a Medicare Advantage plan. Next week we will provide our helpful article on Medicare vs. Medicare Advantage plans, which always sparks a helpful debate among our Members.

Medicare after the Inflation Reduction Act

Meanwhile, here is a report from Tom Cretella, certified Medicare Broker, on how the Inflation Reduction Act is going to help millions of retired Americans with their drug costs. Plus how you should be evaluating your Part D prescription drug plan choices while the Open Enrollment Period lasts.

Capping out of pocket costs to $2000 per year will be huge for millions of people who are eligible for Medicare prescription drug plans. As a Medicare broker I can tell you the #1 complaint about Medicare is out of pocket expenses for their prescriptions. When you consider drugs like Eliquis, which is very popular @$521 per month, or Xarelto@ 504,  or Remicade @ $5,998, it’s easy to see that out of pocket expense in a Medicare RX plan can result in tens of  thousands of dollars in out of pocket expenses. So capping costs at $2000 starting in 2025 is a home run for Medicare recipients. The new law also increases the income limits to be eligible for subsidy or help. Vaccines will be free in 2024. Medicare-covered insulin will cost $35, a big aid to many people.

Whether you have a Medigap plan and RX plan or a Medicare Advantage plan with RX these changes will affect you. Besides providing needed immediate financial relief  the new law opens numerous long term financial planning options and the relocation of assets.

This is the time

As we approach the annual enrollment period (AEP) beginning October 15 and ending December 7, this is the time to check for changes in your existing plans, check drug formulary changes,  and evaluate whether the plan properly reflects one’s utilization habits.

As income changes,  be aware that the cost of Part B is subject to increase if income increases substantially or decreases with lower taxable income.

Sitting with or consulting with a certified Medicare Broker will prove valuable.  Helping people make the right Medicare choices is our priority.

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