Choosing a Medicare plan is a big decision for eligible individuals, including those who are age 65 or older or are living with a disability, as the plan you select during the Medicare Advantage and Prescription Drug Plan Annual Election Period is the plan you’ll have for the coming year, with a few exceptions.
The Annual Election Period runs from October 15 through December 7. This year’s AEP brings some new challenges for enrollees, due to potential restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic. Fortunately, there are a variety of resources available to ensure you can safely and securely compare plan options from the comfort of your home, including: Online workshops: Many insurance companies are offering online workshops to help educate individuals about 2021 Medicare Advantage plan options. Before you attend a virtual event, find out in advance how to log on to the meeting to avoid technical issues.
Virtual meetings: Set up one-on-one meetings with licensed sales agents by phone or video chat. Be prepared with your questions to ensure you get the information you need, such as what innovative benefits are available and if vision, hearing and dental coverage are included.
Trusted websites: Go to the Medicare Plan Finder on Medicare to compare plans, benefits and an estimated cost for each plan based on an average member. If you are interested in Medicare Part D, which helps cover the cost of prescription medications, you can also enter the names of prescription medications you take to ensure those medications are covered by the plan you are considering.When researching plan information, be sure to provide only your Medicare number and other personal data to trusted sources, such as your doctor, pharmacist, hospital or health insurer, as scammers may try to steal your data. It’s also important to not click links in text messages and emails about COVID-19 from unknown sources, and not to answer unsolicited phone calls offering COVID-19 tests or supplies.Utilizing trusted resources will ensure that you select the plan that will suit your healthcare needs for the coming year.