Retirement: Medicare Open Enrollment ends Friday
The open enrollment period for Medicare ends Friday. Retirees need to be aware of some options and costs that may affect them. Recently, Morningstar provided six considerations about Medicare options:
First, there’s another choice aside from the traditional Medicare plan: Medicare Advantage. Whereas the traditional Medicare is a “fee-for-service” plan, Medicare Advantage is an all-in-one plan that may also include vision and dental insurance. It’s more like an HMO or PPO plan with in-network services. Medicare Advantage may work best for younger, healthier seniors.
Second, retirees should review their Medicare Part D plans yearly as plans can change. Also, the premiums, the out of pockets, and what’s covered can also change. In addition, the provider networks can change. Review options annually as money may be saved.
Third, the best time to purchase Medi-gap insurance — a supplemental plan that captures out-of-pocket expenses — is when retirees first enroll. This is because it is an open enrollment period initially and the insurers cannot do medical underwriting, meaning they cannot charge you more because of the health condition or even turn you away for coverage.
Fourth, retirees have until the end of March 2019 to change their Medicare Advantage plan if they don’t like it, or even move back into the traditional Medicare plan.
Fifth, premiums for part D plans are going up on average 2% in 2019. However, that’s an average: Some could go up as much as 10%. Retirees can check their options at Medicare.gov.
Finally, although the good news is the cost-of-living adjustment is 2.8%, the highest in six years, inflation is higher, too. Part B premiums will rise anywhere from $1.50 to $135.50 per month.
Please review your options before Friday. If you need assistance, please contact your financial advisor. If you still need help, call me and I will provide you some additional resource information.
At Canyon Lake Senior Home Care, we provide the assistance and care necessary for seniors to continue to age gracefully at home. Our desire is to assist and serve the elderly in the Canyon Lake area. Please let us know how we may meet your needs.