The last day to switch your Medicare Prescription drug or Medicare Advantage plan for 2022 is December 7th. If you would like to keep your coverage as is you do not have to do anything, it will auto-renew for 2022. Everyone will be happy on December 8th once the Medicare advertisements and phone calls die down. These advertisements have been none stop and misleading, however just like all the political ads during elections, once it's over they should end and we won't have to see Joe Namath and Jimmie JJ Walker until next year.
If you have not reviewed your Medicare coverage for 2022 you should call us now to check on your coverage for next year.
After December 7th you are locked in for 2022 to the Medicare drug plan you chose however, there are certain situations where you can change during the year, below are a few of the most common.
1. You qualify for any state or federal assistance with prescription drug coverage.
If you are enrolled in the NJ PAAD, Senior Gold, or Federal Extra Help then you can change your coverage during the year without an issue. These programs help pay some of the cost for prescription drugs at the pharmacy and the monthly fee for your prescription drug plan. New Jersey recently raised their qualification thresholds so that an individual can qualify if your income is below $48,769 or anyone filing taxes jointly can qualify if their income is below $55,270. If you would like assistance applying for these programs please feel free to reach out to New Jersey Medicare Brokers. Here is the state website with more information.
2. You move out of your plan's service area
If you move during the year to another state or area within New Jersey that does not offer your current coverage you have the ability to change your plan during that time. Be sure to not change your address with Social Security until you're in your new location because changing your address will disenroll you from your current plan for the end of that month. Once you change your address you can enroll in a new plan in your new location but don't wait until the next month to do so or you will not have coverage.
3. Anyone enrolled in Medicare Advantage can change between Jan. 1 to Mar. 31
Recently Medicare Advantage enrollees have the ability to try out their plan and make a change to their coverage between Jan. 1 to Mar. 31. During this time you can switch from one Medicare Advantage plan to another or from Medicare Advantage to Original Medicare. This election period does not allow you to switch from one Part D (Prescription Drug Plan) to another. Medicare insurers are not allowed to advertise the way they are during the fall enrollment period so you will not be bombarded by advertisements all day and night.
4. You are admitted to a Skilled Nursing Facility.
If during the year you are admitted to a skilled nursing facility such as a nursing home you have the ability to switch your Medicare Advantage or Prescription Drug plan. Medicare typically will only pay for a maximum of up to 100 days in these facilities however it's important to ensure that the healthcare providers that work through the building accept your coverage. An example is the physical therapy or doctors that visit the building to provide care to residents.
Feel free to reach out with any questions about your coverage.
New Jersey Medicare Brokers