Spring is about new beginnings, and that applies to Medicare as well. Whether you are a first-time recipient or looking to update your plan for the year, you can read about some of your coverage here.
What screenings does Medicare cover? Several. Part B screens for various health issues, from diabetes and cancer to glaucoma and mental health issues. In addition to offering counseling for those wishing to stop smoking, Medicare also provides flu shots and nutritional therapy.1
All About Medigap Insurance
Medigap is a supplemental insurance policy designed to help cover the costs of certain medical expenses that Medicare doesn’t cover, such as copayments, coinsurance, medical care when traveling abroad, and deductibles. Medigap insurance can be a viable option for those who wish to gain additional coverage. Unlike Medicare, private insurance companies offer Medigap policies, and their availability and coverage options can vary from state to state. You pay the company a monthly premium for the coverage and any Medicare premium you may be required to pay. Medigap is designed to pick up where Medicare leaves off. If you have Medigap coverage, Medicare will pay its share of any approved amounts for covered costs, and then your Medigap policy will pay its share. To be eligible for Medigap, you must already have Medicare Part A, and Part B. Medigap policies are only designed to provide coverage for one person, meaning you and your spouse must each select your own policies. The insurance company providing the policy can’t drop you as long as you continue to make your monthly payments.2
How Medicare Special Enrollment Periods Work
These special enrollment periods don’t refer to a specific set time but to life events that might come to pass. Some of these events include moving to an area outside your existing plan’s service area or returning to the U.S. after living abroad. Other circumstances include opportunities to enroll in other coverage through an employer or union or Medicare terminating its contract with your plan provider. While these situations are varied, you generally have two months to make your change. If something happens to you or your relationship with your coverage is altered, reach out to the relevant entities and sign up for your replacement coverage.3
Mount Fuji in Japan.
January 1: Medicare General Enrollment Begins
January 1: Medicare Advantage Enrollment Begins
January 15: Medicare Advantage/Part D Rate Release
March 31: Medicare General Enrollment Ends
March 31: Medicare Advantage Enrollment Ends
April: Flu Season Ends
September: Private plans send notice if there will be any change in cost, coverage, or service area
October 15: Medicare Open Enrollment Period Begins
November: Flu season begins
November 6 (estimated): Medicare Parts A & B Premiums & Deductibles Announced
December 7: Medicare Open Enrollment Ends
We do not offer every plan available in your area. Any information we provide is limited to those plans we do offer in your area. Please contact Medicare.gov or 1-800-MEDICARE to get information on all of your options.