When is the Medicare Annual Election Period (AEP), and what can you do? You can make changes to all your Medicare Plans during AEP from October 15 to December 7. For example, you can change your Medicare Advantage, Medicare Supplement, or Part D drug plan. In particular, you can switch insurance carriers, enroll or disenroll from any of these Medicare plans.
Drug Plan Changes
In this FAQ Friday video, Robert Bache advises you to look for changes to your drug plan. Moreover, Robert “encourages you to focus on any formulary changes.” Part D Formulary is a list of drugs covered by your plan.
First, Robert advises you to check and make sure your plan covers all your prescriptions. If possible, you want most of your drugs under Tier 1 or 2. Otherwise, Tier 3 drugs will be more expensive. If the medications you take are not available or will be more expensive, you can change your drug plan.
Annual Notice of Change (ANOC)
The month before starting the Medicare Annual Election Period, your insurance carrier sends you an ANOC notice. When you receive this Annual Notice of Change (ANOC) in September, you can review your plan changes. Then decide to keep or change your Medicare plan.
For example, you should receive ANOC notice by September 30 from your Medicare Advantage or Part D drug carrier. The changes you see to your Advantage or Drug plan will be effective in January of the next year. According to Medicare.gov, ANOC includes any changes in coverage, costs, or service.
2021 Medicare Plans
October 1, 2020, Senior Healthcare Direct will have access to the new 2021 Medicare Plans. You can start shopping for a new Medicare Plan on or after October 1 by calling 1-855-368-4717 or get your quote. However, Robert says, “you can not actually change your plan until October 15.” So what plans can you change during the Medicare Annual Election Period?
Change Any Medicare Plan during the Annual Election Period
You can change any Medicare plan during the Annual Election Period (AEP). However, you can change from one Medicare Supplement plan to a different Medigap plan anytime all year long. You can change Medicare Advantage plans or switch to Medigap plan during AEP or Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment. Furthermore, you can enroll, drop, or switch carriers on your Part D prescription drug coverage.
AEP – Medicare Advantage Plan Changes
During AEP, you can make the following changes:
- Original Medicare to Medicare Advantage
- Medicare Advantage to Original Medicare
- Switch from one Advantage plan to a different advantage plan
When you switch to a different Medicare Advantage plan, you can choose a plan that either does or does not include drug coverage. If you switch to Original Medicare, you can then enroll in Part D drug coverage and Medicare Supplement plan.
AEP – Part D Plan Changes
During the Medicare Annual Election Period, you can make the following Part D changes:
- Enroll in Part D prescription drug plan
- Switch from one Part D plan to a different Part D plan
- Drop your Part D plan