Medicare Open Enrollment period starts soon

VIROQUA, Wis. (WKBT) - The Open Enrollment Period (OEP) for current Medicare Beneficiaries to enroll in or change plans is October 15 through December 7.

During the OEP, a person can make any of the following changes, which will be effective January 1, 2019.

•    Join a Part D plan (if not already enrolled);
•    Drop a Part D plan;
•    Switch to a new Part D plan;
•    Drop a Medicare Advantage plan and return to Original Medicare; or
•    Join or switch a Medicare Advantage plan with or without drug coverage.

Medicare beneficiaries receive an Annual Notice of Change (ANOC) from their current plan to review, which arrives in the mail around October 15th.  This document notifies beneficiaries of the changes for their current plan which are effective January 1, 2019.  They also receive a booklet “Medicare and You 2019” in early October, which includes a list of all Part C and Part D plans for their state in the last pages. 

According to a news release, an effective way to choose a plan is by going to Medicare's website,, and using the "PlanFinder" tool.

Research shows that fewer than 10% of Medicare beneficiaries are enrolled in the most cost-effective Part D plan.  Name recognition, or only looking at a plan’s monthly premium, may not be good ways to choose a plan.  If a person is unsure how to pick and evaluate a plan, the person can utilize the following resources: 

    Board on Aging and Long-Term Care Part D Helpline (ages 60+) at (855) 677-2783
    Disability Rights Wisconsin Part D Helpline (ages 18-59) at (800) 926-4862
    Board on Aging and Long-Term Care Medigap Helpline at (800) 242-1060
    Local Aging & Disability Center: Vernon County (608) 637-5201 or (888) 637-1323


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