The New York State Office for the Aging (NYSOFA) reminds older New Yorkers that this year’s Medicare open enrollment period ends December 7, 2020. Medicare health and prescription drug plans can make changes each year to costs, coverage, and what providers and pharmacies are in their networks. During the open enrollment period, people with Medicare can change their health plans and prescription drug coverage for the following year to better meet their needs. Plan changes take effect January 1, 2021.
“People’s health and financial status can change over the course of a year—particularly this year, due to COVID-19. Plans also can change what they will cover as well as adjust the cost to the beneficiary,” said NYSOFA Acting Director Greg Olsen. “It’s important for older adults to review their current plans before the end of the open enrollment period to ensure they are getting a plan that is a good value and meets their health care and prescription drug coverage needs. Health Insurance Information, Counseling and Assistance Program (HIICAP) counselors at each local office for the aging can provide older New Yorkers with the information needed to make an informed choice about a plan that is best for them.”
New Yorkers can take the CV19 CheckUp, a free, anonymous, personalized online tool that evaluates an individual’s risks associated with COVID-19 based on their life situation and behaviors and provides recommendations and resources to reduce those risks. Developed by BellAge, Inc., the CV19CheckUp tool helps people be safer, healthier, and ensure their individual needs are met during the pandemic.
Several resources are available to help Medicare beneficiaries and their families review and compare their current health and prescription plan coverage with new plan offerings:
Medicare.gov has comprehensive information for people interested in signing up or changing their plans. The Medicare Plan Finder tool provides a personalized comparison of plan choices.
Medicare recipients who have limited incomes and resources may qualify for extra help with Medicare prescription drug plan costs. Older adults may apply online or call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY users should call 1-800-325-0778 to find out more.)
1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227) offers around-the-clock assistance for those who want to find out more about coverage options. TTY users should call 1-877-486-2048. Multilingual counseling is available.