Most Medicare Beneficiaries know that during each autumn, from October 15 to December 7, they can evaluate and make changes to their healthcare plans. But for those of you enrolled in Medicare Advantage, you have a second chance to make changes for this coverage year. If you’ve enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan for 2023, but you’re having second thoughts, you can participate in Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment until March 31.
What can you do during Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment? At this time, those of you enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan can review your current arrangements with other Medicare Advantage plans available in your area. If you decide another plan works better for you based on your needs, you can switch.
If you decide that Medicare Advantage is just not for you, you can drop your plan and return to Original Medicare (Parts A and B). Part A is free to almost everyone, assuming you accumulated enough work credits, and you will pay a premium for Part B coverage. You can also add a Part D (prescription) plan to your Original Medicare.
Why would you switch Medicare plans? With Medicare Advantage plans, the drug formulary (list of covered prescriptions) is a common consideration. If you need a new medication that is not covered, or if the plan’s formulary has changed, you might want to switch to a different plan.
The plan’s network is also critical. Make sure your preferred providers and facilities will be covered on the plan’s network, so that you can access the care options you prefer.
Sometimes, a Medicare beneficiary simply moves to a new area. A new geographical location will necessitate a new network of providers, and therefore a new Medicare Advantage plan.
Remember, this Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period is only open to those who are already enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan.