October 11, 2017


If you miss this Medicare deadline, it could hurt your health…



Well October is upon us and the weather is beginning to change. 


It's likely you've started hearing conversations about Medicare's open enrollment period, which begins Sunday, October 15 and runs through early December.

If you're like many older Americans, the question is whether you need to do anything.

Put simply, it depends.


In basic terms, the enrollment period, which lasts until Dec. 7, is for adding or changing coverage related to Medicare Part C (also known as an Advantage Plan) and Part D (prescription drug coverage).


It is our opinion as a newspaper covering the Eastside of San Antonio that we are often not very well informed on all the available options. 


The clock starts ticking three months before the month in which you turn 65 and ends three months after your birthday month. So, for example, if the big day is June 15, your signup period begins March 1 and ends Sept. 30.


If you are still working and get healthcare through your employer, you might be able to delay signing up without paying a penalty.  Generally speaking, it's during your initial enrollment period that you must sign up for Medicare Parts A and B.


For seniors that have Medicare, it allows you to change plans or get one if you didn’t during the Open Enrollment Period.  


When a person is first eligible to get Medicare they have the month they are eligible, 3 months before and 3 months after which gives them a total of 7 months to get a plan.   It may take that period of time to choose a specific Medicare plan since the process can be a bit confusing. 




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