upcoming changes to the medicare advantage plan

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September 11, 2018

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Would you like to change to a different Medicare Advantage plan?  Beginning in January 2019, you will have that opportunity!  You will also have more time to enroll (or disenroll).

The new Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period will run from January 1 – March 31.  (This replaces the Medicare Advantage Disenrollment Period that ran from January 1 – February 14 each year.)  If you are currently enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan, you will have a one-time opportunity to do the following:


  • Switch to a different Medicare Advantage plan;

  • Drop Medicare Advantage and return to Original Medicare;

  • Sign up for a stand-alone Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plan (if you return to Original Medicare); or

  • Drop your stand-alone Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plan


Why would you want to switch to a different Medicare Advantage plan?  Benefits included in each plan can change from year to year.  One year you may need a certain prescription plan, and the next you may need to be sure vision is included.  Be sure to review your Annual Notice of Change (ANOC) carefully to confirm changes to be made to your current plan.

A stand-alone Medicare Prescription plan is one that can be added to the Original Medicare (most Medicare Advantage plans include drug coverage).  If you drop your Medicare Advantage plan and return to the Original Medicare plan, be sure to add the stand-alone Prescription plan!

By the way – more good news!  The average monthly premium for Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plan is expected to DROP slightly depending on which plan you have and where you live.  This decrease is attributable to the allowance of certain generic drugs to be allowed as well as the increase in number of plans and pharmacies that will be available.

If you would like help in deciding which plan is best for you, please do not hesitate to contact your SilverCare team!  We are here to take the Mystery out of Medicare!