This past fall, the Medicare Rights Center’s national consumer helpline staff and volunteers were hard at work assisting people with their Medicare coverage options. Fall Open Enrollment is the time of year when people with Medicare can change their coverage, and it is Medicare Rights’ busiest season. During this time—which takes place from October 15 through December 7 every year—Medicare Rights answered more than 3,000 questions for older adults and people with disabilities. Helpline counselors and staff assisted clients with reviewing their current coverage, comparing their Medicare Part D plan and Medicare Advantage plan options, and discussing the benefits of Original Medicare versus Medicare Advantage.
One helpline caller, Ms. E, who is 85 years old and lives in Brooklyn, needed help finding a Medicare Part D plan that covered her prescription drugs. She was unhappy with her current coverage but didn’t know what her other options were. Since Ms. E had difficulty using the Internet to research other plans by herself, a Medicare Rights counselor helped her use the Plan Finder tool on www.medicare.gov. Together they compared plans based on the prescription drugs Ms. E needed, the pharmacy she visited, and her drug costs. Ms. E selected and enrolled in a new Part D plan, which began on January 1, 2018, and her prescription costs are now lower than they were with her previous Part D plan.
Medicare Rights is proud of the assistance we offered this client and thousands of others during Fall Open Enrollment. Throughout the year, we help thousands more with their health coverage options, counseling those who are new to Medicare during their Initial Enrollment Period, or those that have a Special Enrollment Period because their employer coverage ended. To learn more about enrollment periods and get answers to all your Medicare questions, call the helpline at 800-333-4114.
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