Qualifying for a Medicare Advantage Plan
You can generally qualify for a Medicare Advantage plan if you meet these conditions:
Initial Enrollment Period (IEP)--available when you first become eligible for Medicare after reaching age 65, or qualifying because of a disability. IEP is a seven (7) month period that begins three (3) months before, and ends three (3) months after your birth/eligibility month.
Annual Election Period (AEP)-- general time period each year when you can make changes to your coverage for the upcoming year. Again in 2014, this period will begin on October 15th and end of December 7th.
Disenrollment Period (ADP)-This period begins on January 1st and ends on
Special Enrollment Period (SEP)-You may also make changes to your Medicare coverage options at any time when certain circumstances apply, such as:
Premium. If you join a Medicare Advantage plan, you will continue to pay your Part B premium and your Part A premium, if you have one. The plan may also charge its own premium, although some Medicare Advantage Plans do not. Premiums for Medicare Advantage plans vary widely.
Deductible. Some plans charge deductibles, and some do not. LOOK AT AND REVIEW THE PLAN FOR SPECIFIC DETAILS.
Copay. Many plans charge copays. LOOK AT AND REVIEW THE PLAN FOR SPECIFIC DETAILS.
Coinsurance. Medicare Advantage plans set their own terms about coinsurance. LOOK AT AND REVIEW THE PLAN FOR SPECIFIC DETAILS.
Maximum out-of-pocket limits. All Medicare Advantage plans protect you from high cost sharing by limiting the amount you will have to spend each year. Original Medicare Parts A and B DON NOT have this feature.
Medicare Advantage plans are usually referred to as Medicare Part C. They are Medicare-approved private health insurance plans for individuals eligible for Medicare. When you join a Medicare Advantage plan, you are still in the Medicare program.