Trying to understand all of the Medicare enrollment periods can sometimes be
confusing. One in particular is the
Open Enrollment Period, which shouldn’t be confused with the Medicare General
Enrollment Period. There are three different types of Open Enrollment Periods:
Medigap Open Enrollment, Medicare Advantage and Part D Prescription Drug
Coverage Open Enrollment, and Medicare Advantage Only Open Enrollment.
The Medigap Open Enrollment Period (Medigap is also known as a Medicare
Supplement) begins on the 1st day of the month in which you are 65
AND enrolled in Medicare Part B, lasting a total of 6 months. During this time
you are considered a “guaranteed-issue.” This means all Medigap carriers are
required to accept you into their plan with no health questions or underwriting.
The Medicare Advantage and Part D Prescription Drug Plan Open Enrollment Period
is November 15 through December 31 of every year. During this time you can
enroll, disenroll, or change your Medicare Advantage and Prescription Drug Plan
or your stand alone Prescription Drug Plan. This also sometimes referred to as
the Medicare Annual Election Period.
Lastly, the Medicare Advantage Only Open Enrollment Period is January 1 through
March 31 of every year. During this time you can enroll, disenroll, or change
(only one time) your stand alone Medicare Advantage Plan. This same time period
is also the Medicare General Enrollment Period. These two periods are not be
confused, they are not the same. The Medicare General Enrollment Period is the
time in which you can enroll in Medicare Part A and/or B if you chose not to
during your Initial Enrollment Period (when first eligible).
www.mwgseniorhealthcare.com for more information.