Each year anyone who is on Medicare and enrolled in a Medicare Advantage Plan (MA) or Prescription Drug Plan (PDP) has an open enrollment period to make changes in their plan if they wish. This open enrollment period is called the Annual Election Period (AEP). It extends from October 15th to December 7th. There is also a period from October 1st to October 14th that is commonly called Pre-AEP.
Pre-AEP is an important time for Medicare beneficiaries. Insurance companies who offer MAs or PDPs cannot release their plan information for 2021 until October 1st. You can use this time to review your current plan to see if there has been any significant changes in your premium or copays. It’s also a good time to review the prescription drug coverage of your plan, especially if you have had changes in the drugs you are taking. If any new plans are coming into your county, this is the time they are announced so be on the lookout for those.
Pre-AEP can also be a confusing time. Although it’s designed for you to gather information on any changes that are coming for 2022, you may get phone calls or letters from insurance companies or your local agent. Local agents, in particular, like to use Pre-AEP to reach out to their clients and do policy reviews for the next year. This is totally acceptable under Medicare rules. It is also acceptable for you to attend a meeting or seminar during Pre-AEP to hear the details of 2022 plans. The one thing you cannot do is officially sign up for a new plan until after October 15th.
The good news is if you’re happy with the plan you are in you won’t have to do a thing. You will automatically roll into the 2022 plan as long as it’s still offered in your area. If you have any questions about Pre-AEP you can contact our office for more information.
If you have questions regarding any aspect of Medicare or Medicare health plans feel free call us at Alabama Health Guidance (256-648-5710), stop by our office at 885 Florence Blvd (Four Lane Shopping Center) or email me at email@example.com.