If you’re enrolled in Medicare, a critical time period starts October 15 and lasts just over 7 weeks. And no matter what coverage you presently have, now is the time to begin examining your options and preparing for possible changes.
On October 15th each year, Medicare Open Enrollment begins. For the following 7-plus weeks, until December 7th, there are several things you can do that will directly affect your Medicare coverage, and your costs. We found a helpful snapshot of options in this recent article on the popular financial website, Motley Fool — click here to access the article.
During Open Enrollment, here’s some of what you can do:
- Switch from traditional Medicare to a Medicare Advantage Plan, or vice versa
- Swap one Medicare Advantage Plan for another
- Switch from a Medicare Advantage Plan with drug coverage to one without, or vice versa
- Add, drop or change Medicare Part D coverage.
If all those options sound complex, it’s only because they are! As the Motley Fool article cautions, “The first thing to realize about Medicare open enrollment is that it can be far more complicated than you realize.” The article goes on to state that, because total costs and coverage can vary greatly between plans and no one can truly predict their future health care needs, “it’s impossible to come up with a choice that’s guaranteed to work out to be the best one you could have made.”
But don’t despair. There are several things you can do to guide you as you choose the plan that’s best for you, starting with an honest consideration of your personal health and finances. You’ll find links to some helpful resources on the Motley Fool article. We also recommend you attend one of our upcoming Life Planning Seminars in your area, where you’ll receive more guidance on how to make a wise Medicare choice. Click on the Upcoming Events tab on this website for the dates and times of a Life Planning Seminar near you.
(Originally reported at www.fool.com/retirement)