Have you felt satisfied with your health insurance plan over the past year? Have you received a notice that your provider is dropping out of your local market, or that details of your plan are changing? Do you even have health insurance (a few people still don’t)? Are you new to Medicare?
Health insurance is a complicated business, and plans can change from one year to the next. Luckily, you have the opportunity to review and make changes to your plan each fall, during the annual ‘Open Enrollment Period’ for health insurance (or the Annual Election Period, for Medicare).
It will be time to make a decision before you know it. If you’re enrolled in Medicare, your Annual Election Period will run from October 15 to December 7. For everyone else, Open Enrollment for 2018 health insurance plans begins November 1 and lasts through January 31st.
That might seem like some time away, but both enrollment periods are just around the corner. In the meantime, you should be doing the following:
- Take a look at your medical expenditures for the year. Would a plan with a lower or higher deductible make more sense for you?
- Think about your coverage for the past year – were you satisfied with network doctors and facilities?
- Watch your mail for notices from Medicare or your health insurance company.
- Talk to your primary physician about your health status, potential for upcoming procedures or operations, and prescription medication options.
Those tips are important for everyone to follow, but if you’re on Medicare, remember that you can add or drop an Advantage Plan or prescription drug plan. If you do nothing during the Annual Election Period, your current plan(s) will automatically renew.
If you’re enrolled in a health insurance plan through Covered California, you will need to log in and update your household and financial information whether or not you want to change plans. This helps to ensure that your subsidy, if you receive one, is calculated correctly.
Finally, if you don’t already have health insurance, mark November 1 on your calendar. You can apply for health insurance coverage through Covered California, or select a private plan if you prefer.
As always, give us a call if you need help. We can help you compare plans, understand your options, and make the selections that work best for your situation.