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Missed the Medicare Annual Election Period?

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Here’s What You Can Do

The Medicare Annual Election Period (AEP), which runs from October 15th to December 7th annually, is a critical timeframe for making changes to your Medicare coverage. However, if you missed this enrollment period, all is not lost. There are still options available for adjusting your Medicare coverage and ensuring you have the most suitable plan for your needs.

Special Enrollment Periods (SEPs)

In certain situations, missing the AEP may qualify you for a Special Enrollment Period (SEP). SEPs allow you to make changes to your Medicare coverage outside of the standard enrollment periods. Qualifying life events, such as moving, losing other insurance coverage, or changes in your Medicaid status, can trigger an SEP and grant you the opportunity to adjust your Medicare plan.

Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period

If you’re already enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan and missed the AEP, you have a chance to make changes during the Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period, which runs from January 1st to March 31st each year. During this period, you can switch to a different Medicare Advantage plan or return to Original Medicare (Part A and Part B).

Medicaid and the Low-Income Subsidy (LIS)

If you qualify for Medicaid or the Low-Income Subsidy (LIS) and missed the AEP, you have opportunities for enrollment or changes throughout the year. These programs provide assistance with healthcare costs and may allow you to adjust your Medicare coverage as needed.

Missing the Medicare Annual Election Period doesn’t mean you’re stuck with your current plan for the entire year. There are alternative enrollment periods and special circumstances that can enable you to adjust your coverage and find a plan that better suits your healthcare needs. It’s important to stay informed about these options and take advantage of them when they apply to your situation.

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