Skip to Content

Blog

Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period, also known as the Annual Election Period, is the time of year when you can make changes to your Medicare coverage. This period runs from October 15 through December 7, and any changes you make will take effect on January 1. Even if you are happy with your current health and drug coverage, Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period is a good time to review what you have, compare it with other options, and make sure that your current coverage still meets your needs for the next year.  

First, it’s helpful to know the changes you can make during Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period.  

During Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period, or OEP, you can make certain changes to your health insurance coverage, including adding, dropping, or changing your Medicare Advantage and Part D coverage. You can make as many changes as you want during this period, but only your last coverage choice will take effect in January. The changes you can make include joining a new Medicare Advantage Plan or Part D prescription drug plan, switching from Original Medicare to a Medicare Advantage Plan, and switching from a Medicare Advantage Plan to Original Medicare.

If you are switching to Original Medicare, note that you may have limited options for purchasing a Medigap policy to help with your out-of-pocket costs. Medigap purchasing rules can vary state by state, so contact your State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) to learn more about Medigap policies and state-specific Medigap rights. Use our online SHIP Locator or call 877-839-2675 (and say “Medicare” when prompted) to find your local SHIP.

Before making a decision about your 2023 coverage, consider the Medicare health and drug plan options in your area. You may be able to receive the same or better health or drug coverage at a more affordable price. Even if you are satisfied with your current Medicare Advantage or Part D plan, you should check to see if there is another plan in your area that offers the same health or drug coverage at a better price. Contact your local SHIP for assistance comparing your Medicare coverage options.

As we approach Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period, you should begin by reviewing your current Medicare health and drug coverage. 

You receive a lot of mail during Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period, so it is important to know which mailings include information about your current coverage. No matter how you receive your Medicare coverage, you should consider your access to health care providers and pharmacies you want to use, your access to benefits and services you need, and the total costs for insurance premiums, deductibles, and cost-sharing amounts.

If you have Original Medicare, visit Medicare.gov or read the 2023 Medicare & You handbook to learn about Original Medicare benefits for 2023. If you have a Medicare Advantage Plan or a stand-alone Part D plan, read your plan’s Annual Notice of Change, or ANOC, and Evidence of Coverage, or EOC. These notices list any changes for your plan in 2023. Pay special attention to any changes in the plan’s costs, the plan’s benefits and coverage rules, and the plan’s formulary. The formulary is the list of drugs your plan covers. Make sure that your drugs will still be covered next year and that your providers and pharmacies are still in the plan’s network. If you are unhappy with any of your plan’s changes, you can change plans.

Next, know how to make changes to your Medicare health and drug coverage. 

You can use services provided by the government to make Medicare coverage changes. Call 1-800-MEDICARE to make changes by phone or visit Medicare.gov to compare options and enroll in some plans online.

You can also contact plans directly to learn about the services they cover or to enroll. Confirm everything that a plan tells you before making a final decision and get everything in writing. Before joining, call your doctors to make sure that they are in the provider network for the plan you want to join.

If you want one-on-one help reviewing your options or making changes, contact your State Health Insurance Assistance Program, or SHIP. SHIPs are funded by the government to provide trusted, unbiased Medicare counseling. Use our online SHIP Locator or call 877-839-2675 (and say “Medicare” when prompted) to find your local SHIP.

Finally, protect yourself from marketing violations and enrollment fraud during this time. 

During Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period, there is a higher risk than usual for fraudulent activity or misleading marketing. Medicare has rules about how plans can and cannot communicate with you to market their insurance products. Plans are allowed to send you mail and emails but are not allowed to call or visit you in person without your permission. Beware of people who pressure you to join their plan, tell you they represent Medicare or are calling on behalf of Medicare, or inform you that you will lose your Medicare benefits unless you sign up for a certain plan. Before you enroll in a plan, make sure you understand what the plan covers and whether it covers the drugs you need. Contact a plan directly to learn about the services it covers and get everything in writing. If you feel you may be experiencing Medicare fraud, errors, or abuse, you can contact your Senior Medicare Patrol, or SMP. SMP representatives can teach you how to spot and protect yourself from potential Medicare fraud. To contact your local SMP, call 877-808-2468 or visit www.smpresource.org.

Still have questions?   

Your SHIP is here for you! You can contact your SHIP for any other Medicare-related questions or concerns you have. SHIP counselors are government funded to provide trusted, unbiased Medicare counseling at no cost to you. (Depending on your state, your SHIP may go by another name.) Use our online SHIP Locator or call 877-839-2675 (and say “Medicare” when prompted) to find your local SHIP.

Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period, also known as the Annual Election Period, is the time of year when you can make changes to your Medicare coverage. This period runs from October 15 through December 7, and any changes you make will take effect on January 1. Even if you are happy with your current health and drug coverage, Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period is a good time to review what you have, compare it with other options, and make sure that your current coverage still meets your needs for the next year.  

First, it’s helpful to know the changes you can make during Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period.  

During Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period, or OEP, you can make certain changes to your health insurance coverage, including adding, dropping, or changing your Medicare Advantage and Part D coverage. You can make as many changes as you want during this period, but only your last coverage choice will take effect in January. The changes you can make include joining a new Medicare Advantage Plan or Part D prescription drug plan, switching from Original Medicare to a Medicare Advantage Plan, and switching from a Medicare Advantage Plan to Original Medicare.

If you are switching to Original Medicare, note that you may have limited options for purchasing a Medigap policy to help with your out-of-pocket costs. Medigap purchasing rules can vary state by state, so contact your State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) to learn more about Medigap policies and state-specific Medigap rights. Use our online SHIP Locator or call 877-839-2675 (and say “Medicare” when prompted) to find your local SHIP.

Before making a decision about your 2023 coverage, consider the Medicare health and drug plan options in your area. You may be able to receive the same or better health or drug coverage at a more affordable price. Even if you are satisfied with your current Medicare Advantage or Part D plan, you should check to see if there is another plan in your area that offers the same health or drug coverage at a better price. Contact your local SHIP for assistance comparing your Medicare coverage options.

As we approach Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period, you should begin by reviewing your current Medicare health and drug coverage. 

You receive a lot of mail during Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period, so it is important to know which mailings include information about your current coverage. No matter how you receive your Medicare coverage, you should consider your access to health care providers and pharmacies you want to use, your access to benefits and services you need, and the total costs for insurance premiums, deductibles, and cost-sharing amounts.

If you have Original Medicare, visit Medicare.gov or read the 2023 Medicare & You handbook to learn about Original Medicare benefits for 2023. If you have a Medicare Advantage Plan or a stand-alone Part D plan, read your plan’s Annual Notice of Change, or ANOC, and Evidence of Coverage, or EOC. These notices list any changes for your plan in 2023. Pay special attention to any changes in the plan’s costs, the plan’s benefits and coverage rules, and the plan’s formulary. The formulary is the list of drugs your plan covers. Make sure that your drugs will still be covered next year and that your providers and pharmacies are still in the plan’s network. If you are unhappy with any of your plan’s changes, you can change plans.

Next, know how to make changes to your Medicare health and drug coverage. 

You can use services provided by the government to make Medicare coverage changes. Call 1-800-MEDICARE to make changes by phone or visit Medicare.gov to compare options and enroll in some plans online.

You can also contact plans directly to learn about the services they cover or to enroll. Confirm everything that a plan tells you before making a final decision and get everything in writing. Before joining, call your doctors to make sure that they are in the provider network for the plan you want to join.

If you want one-on-one help reviewing your options or making changes, contact your State Health Insurance Assistance Program, or SHIP. SHIPs are funded by the government to provide trusted, unbiased Medicare counseling. Use our online SHIP Locator or call 877-839-2675 (and say “Medicare” when prompted) to find your local SHIP.

Finally, protect yourself from marketing violations and enrollment fraud during this time. 

During Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period, there is a higher risk than usual for fraudulent activity or misleading marketing. Medicare has rules about how plans can and cannot communicate with you to market their insurance products. Plans are allowed to send you mail and emails but are not allowed to call or visit you in person without your permission. Beware of people who pressure you to join their plan, tell you they represent Medicare or are calling on behalf of Medicare, or inform you that you will lose your Medicare benefits unless you sign up for a certain plan. Before you enroll in a plan, make sure you understand what the plan covers and whether it covers the drugs you need. Contact a plan directly to learn about the services it covers and get everything in writing. If you feel you may be experiencing Medicare fraud, errors, or abuse, you can contact your Senior Medicare Patrol, or SMP. SMP representatives can teach you how to spot and protect yourself from potential Medicare fraud. To contact your local SMP, call 877-808-2468 or visit www.smpresource.org.

Still have questions?   

Your SHIP is here for you! You can contact your SHIP for any other Medicare-related questions or concerns you have. SHIP counselors are government funded to provide trusted, unbiased Medicare counseling at no cost to you. (Depending on your state, your SHIP may go by another name.) Use our online SHIP Locator or call 877-839-2675 (and say “Medicare” when prompted) to find your local SHIP.

Supplemental Handout