Top 5 Things to Think About When Choosing a Medicare Plan

Are you ready for your Annual Enrollment Period on November 15th?  By now, you probably have over 2 feet of advertising piled up on your dining table offering a myriad of different healthcare choices that are ‘Just Right For You’.  The truth is there are several very good options available to Medicare beneficiaries.  However, the process of trying to determine which one is right for you can be confusing.  The best way to make sure that you are getting everything you need, is to write down the Top 5 things that are important to you, such as: 

1. Do you have a specific doctor or doctors that you currently see or wish to see? 

2. Do you have a specific hospital that you prefer to use in case of an emergency? 

3. Do you have a specific amount of money that you have budgeted to spend, and;

4. Do you have a list of medications that you currently take and will continue taking? 

5. Do you have any special needs such as transportation or low income?

Now that you have focused your needs down to the Top 5, where do you go from there?  You have several options there as well and most importantly, don’t be afraid to ask for help.  Once beneficial and time saving options is to use an independent insurance agent that is contracted with several different healthplans.    This will save you time because they can gather your Top 5 concerns in combination with your zip code and provide you with various options.  Otherwise, you may find yourself wandering from healthplan website to healthplan website trying to determine which of the plans meet your needs and also carriers the richest benefits.  When you use an independent insurance agent, YOU become the client instead of the healthplan.  If an agent only works for one plan, than he/she can only provide information on the benefits of their employer.  Not the case with an indepedent agent, he/she can provide you with a variety of options for you to choose from and eliminate the hassle of working with multiple agents.  The best part of all – there is no cost to the consumer when using an agent, since they receive their compensation directly from the healthplan that you choose. 

So why make this 45-day Annual Enrollment Period stressful?  Sit Back, Relax, and let the agent do the work.  Ask good questions, share with them your concerns and when presented with choices, make sure you fully understand what they are sharing with you, and if you like what you see, enroll!  Chances are, you’ll make a new connection that can assist you years to come.  Most agents want to maintain the relationship year-after-year, which allows you to call them should any Medicare question arise.  For more information on where you can get free quotes for both Medicare Supplement Plans, Medicare Advantage Plans, and Prescription Drug Plans for California go to www.medicareoptionsonline.com.  Now get back to doing something more enjoyable than working about Medicare!