FAQ Friday: Open Enrollment Tip

A helpful tip during the Annual Enrollment period. This tip will help avoid confusion between you and your doctor’s office: As you’re shopping for a Medicare plan, it is very common that we ask our doctors which plans they accept. If you decide to go with a Medicare Advantage plan, if it very important to check with your provider to make sure that they accept the HMO or PPO plan of the carrier that you’re choosing. For example, if you were choosing and HMO plan with United Healthcare, you would call your doctor’s office and ask if they accepted the United Healthcare HMO Medicare Advantage Plan. Ninety percent of the time they will tell you yes or no and then you can proceed from there.

If you are choosing a Medicare Supplement plan (Medigap plan), the ONLY question you need to ask your doctor is if they accept Original Medicare because there are no networks with Medicare Supplements. Medicare is the network. For example, if you decided to choose a Medicare Supplement Plan G with Mutual of Omaha, do not ask your doctor’s office if they accept Mutual of Omaha because what they will do is look up whether or not they accept Mutual of Omaha’s HMO or PPO plan. Simply ask your doctor if they accept Original Medicare because every provider that accepts Original Medicare will accept your Medicare Supplement regardless of the carrier.