Can you believe it? Medicare’s Open Enrollment Period (OEP) starts next month from October 15th until December 7th. It is the busiest time of year for Medicare Advisors like myself.

This is the time to make an annual review of the plan you have. If you want to make changes with the plan or company you are with, now is the time.

In my opinion, OEP or Annual Election Period (AEP), which is the industry technical name for the period, is way overblown. Especially here in WNY where almost everybody qualifies for EPIC. You see, if you have EPIC you can pretty much change your plans whenever you like. Click Here for more on EPIC.

Yow will be receiving a lot of mail in the next couple of months as you well know. The most important being those items received from your current insurance company and the CMS, The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

It should be noted that the goal is to have everything online eventually. This year Plans will not be mailing Evidence of Coverage to beneficiaries. You will have to go online to either find it or request  a copy to be mailed to you!

If you are one of my clients, you know how I feel about this period. Somehow the industry has made this into a free for all event. Most of the agents that come out at this time do not even know as much as you do about medicare. You may think I’m kidding but I’m not.

There are really only few things to concern yourself with. Medicare Advantage or Medigap? When it comes to Medicare Advantage Plans:

  • What are you paying?
  • Is the Insurance Company reputable?
  • Do you Travel?
  • Is your Doctor accepting your plan?
  • Are copays too high?
  • Are deductibles too high?

The most important thing to consider is whether moving to a Medicare Supplement or Medigap plan is warranted. There is absolutely no better coverage than a Medicare Supplement F Plan but if you are healthy why pay the hefty premium?

These are questions you can discuss with your Medicare professional. I will say one last thing. When you are looking for an advisor, make sure he or she is full time and not someone that comes out of the woodwork at the end of the year.