Now that we have your attention … Medicare is available in all 50 states and territories, including Las Vegas. Now is the time to review your Medicare options for both health and drug plans. Medicare Open Enrollment is November 15th to December 31, 2010, but you can compare options beginning October 15, 2010.
Every year, there are new Medicare prescription drug and health plan choices available. Open Enrollment is the time of year when Medicare beneficiaries can review their current health or prescription drug plans, compare what will be available in the new year, and choose the plan that best meets their needs. There’s never been a better time to check out Medicare options. With the new health care law, there are new benefits, including lower prescription costs, wellness check-ups and preventive care. Comparing plans may save Medicare beneficiaries money, get better coverage, or both.
Information is available several ways and here are three easy steps:
STEP 1: Have a list of your current prescription medications available. Check with your current providers (doctors office, physical therapist, etc.) to find out what plans they will accept so that you can still see them. Calculate your gross income and assets (so you can be screened for financial assistance to help with some, or all, of your medical costs).
STEP 2: Compare plans that will be available in Hawai‘i in 2011.
- Visit www.medicare.gov to get a personalized comparison of the costs and coverage of the plans available in your area.
- Call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227) 24-hours a day/7 days a week to find out more about your coverage options. TTY users call 1-877-486-2048.
- Get one-on-one help from the Hawai‘i State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP), also known as the Sage PLUS Program. A certified volunteer can be reached at 808-586-7299 or 1-888-875-9229. You can also pick up a Sage PLUS Medicare Prescription Health/Drug Plan
Compare Form from your nearest pharmacy or online at www.hawaiiship.org. Mail or fax the form in for a personalized comparison.
STEP 3: Enroll in a plan early so that you can enjoy the holiday season.
From January 1, 2011 to February 14, 2011 is a one-time disenrollment opportunity if you want to change from your current Medicare Advantage (MA) Health plan and return to Original/Traditional Medicare. If your MA plan includes drug coverage, you will also have the opportunity to enroll in a supplemental Medicare Prescription Drug Plan.
If you feel overwhelmed, don’t hesitate to call the Sage PLUS Program for guided assistance through the Medicare Open Enrollment Process. Call us at 808-586-7299 or 1-888-875-9229.