October 13, 2016

Now is the Time to Review Medicare Health and Drug Coverage Options
–Medicare’s Fall Open Enrollment Period Is October 15 Through December 7–

New York, NY—Everyone with Medicare who is enrolled in a private health or drug plan should review their choices during the Fall Open Enrollment Period, advises the Medicare Rights Center, a national, nonprofit consumer service organization. Even people who are currently happy with their plan should do so, because plans make changes to their benefit packages every year.

The Fall Open Enrollment Period runs from October 15 through December 7. During this time, people with Medicare can make changes to their health and drug coverage options without restriction. Those enrolled in Original Medicare can switch to a private plan. People with Medicare have the right to make as many changes as they need, and the last change they make on or before December 7 will go into effect on January 1, 2017.

“People with Medicare need to be aware of any changes to their current plan and carefully review all of their options in time to make a decision by December 7,” said Joe Baker, president of the Medicare Rights Center. “While reviewing your options, it is important that you contact the plan to confirm any information you find. Once you have made your decision, you can enroll in the plan by calling 1-800-MEDICARE.”

For those who currently have a Medicare Advantage plan (also known as a Medicare private health plan) or Medicare Part D prescription drug plan, they should have received their Annual Notice of Change (ANOC) before September 30. The ANOC lists the changes in the plan, such as the premium, copays and drug formulary. The ANOC compares the plan benefits in 2017 with those in 2016 and should be used as a starting point when reviewing plan choices during the Fall Open Enrollment Period.

See the Medicare Rights Fall Open Enrollment: a Resource for Journalistsfor more detailed information about the Fall Open Enrollment Period.

Additional resources from the Medicare Rights Center:

Contact: Mitchell Clark – – 212-204-6286

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Medicare Rights Center is a national, nonprofit consumer service organization that works to ensure access to affordable health care for older adults and people with disabilities through counseling and advocacy, educational programs, and public policy initiatives.

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