RBC I The Colorado of Division of Insurance (DOI), part of the Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA), reminds Coloradans that the Medicare open enrollment period is open now and runs through Dec. 7.
During open enrollment, counselors from the Colorado State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP), a DOI program, are available as a resource to help make Medicare information easier to understand.
Medicare open enrollment is an ideal time to review your plan and determine if it is the right fit for you.
During this period, you have an opportunity to make changes to your Medicare Advantage (Medicare Part C) or Medicare prescription drug coverage (Medicare part D) for the following year. You can also switch between Original Medicare (Part A and or Part B) and a Medicare Advantage Plan.
How to get through it all?
“You don’t have to do it alone,” said Kimberly Latta, the SHIP program director. “There are a number of resources for guidance and answers.”
Get one-on-one help from Colorado SHIP counselors, who specialize in Medicare questions. SHIP helps people eligible for or enrolled in Medicare with questions about health insurance. For free Medicare counseling at the SHIP site nearest you, call 1-888-696-7213.
Visit www.Medicare.gov/find-a-plan to compare your current coverage to the options available in your area. You can also enroll on this website. Call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227 / TTY, 1-877-486-2048) 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to find out more about your coverage options.
Review the “Medicare & You 2015” handbook, mailed in September to people with Medicare.
“Because the open enrollment period is the busiest time of the year for counselors to field questions about Medicare, it is recommended that consumers start exploring their options immediately and plan to make the best use of their time with counselors by having all of their information ready before they call,” Latta said.
As an example, Latta noted that Medicare offers a comparison tool for prescription drug coverage in each plan. To take full advantage of this tool, you need to have all your prescription drug information: the names of medications, dosage and frequency. Look for the details on your prescription bottles or packages.