September 28, 2018

Time for a Medicare Tune-Up?

Bike tennis shoes

Medicare Open Enrollment October 15 – December 7

Each January 1st marks the start of a new plan year. A new plan year means insurance companies can – and often do – make changes to their plans that can cost you. If you’re not paying attention and simply let your plan renew, these are changes you’ll have to live with for better or worse in new year.

Here are some important things that insurance companies can change in your coverage:

For Part D (Prescription Drug) plans: 

  • The monthly premium.
  • The annual deductible.
  • Your out-of-pocket co-pays.
  • The drug formulary (listing of medications the plan covers). Just one medication leaving your plan’s formulary can cost thousands over the course the year.
  • The network of pharmacies.
  • The pharmacy cost-sharing.
  • Coverage rule for medications (quantity limit, step therapy, prior authorization)
  • Coverage of medications in the Coverage Gap, commonly known as the Medicare donut hole.  Increasingly, plans are dropping this type of coverage.

For Medicare Advantage health plans:

  • The monthly premium.
  • Your out-of-pocket co-pays and coinsurances.
  • The annual out-of-pocket spending limit.
  • The network of providers.

Prior to the Open Enrollment Period, your Medicare Advantage or drug plan must send information about changes in benefits and costs for the upcoming calendar year. Take time to study that information. 

You can make changes anytime between October 15 and December 7.

If you have concerns about your coverage, you can use the Medicare Plan Finder to compare plans. Or, if you prefer to have an unbiased Medicare expert review your coverage and ensure you’re making the most cost-effective choices, 65 Incorporated offers a Medicare Tune-Up™ service.

To download a free Q&A whitepaper about open enrollment go to this link.

Medicare Important Notes

From the desk of Mike Jette, CFP®, CLU®, CHFC

 

Healthcare

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