Medicare Part C Open Enrollment

with HealthPlusLife

medicare part c open enrollment
November 16, 2023 | Johanna Karlsson

Navigating the complexities of Medicare can be challenging, especially when it comes to understanding the intricacies of Medicare Part C, commonly known as Medicare Advantage. One critical aspect that often raises questions is the open enrollment period for Medicare Part C. Knowing when and how you can enroll or change your Medicare Advantage plan is crucial for making informed healthcare decisions. This article, focusing on Medicare Part C open enrollment, will guide you through the essential information you need, from enrollment periods to guidelines, and will address key concerns about costs and eligibility.

Speak With a Licensed Insurance Agent
Call Now (888) 828-5064 TTY 711

Can You Add Medicare Part C at Any Time?

Enrolling in Medicare Part C, also known as Medicare Advantage, is not something that can be done at any time. Enrollment is restricted to specific periods during the year. The most important period is the Annual Election Period (AEP), which runs from October 15 to December 7 each year. During this time, you can enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan, switch plans, or return to Original Medicare.

Apart from AEP, there are other periods when enrollment or plan changes are possible. The Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period, from January 1 to March 31 each year, allows individuals already enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan to switch to a different Medicare Advantage plan or revert to Original Medicare. Additionally, certain life events, such as moving to a new area or losing current coverage, may qualify you for a Special Enrollment Period (SEP) during which you can enroll in a plan outside the standard periods.

What Are the Guidelines for Medicare Part C?

Medicare Part C, or Medicare Advantage, is an alternative to Original Medicare offered by private insurance companies approved by Medicare. These plans combine Medicare Part A (hospital insurance) and Part B (medical insurance), and often include additional benefits like Medicare Part D (prescription drug coverage) and other wellness programs.

To be eligible for Medicare Part C, you must first be enrolled in both Medicare Part A and Part B. Once enrolled, you can choose a Medicare Advantage plan available in your area. These plans vary in terms of coverage options, provider networks, and costs. It’s important to compare different plans to find one that best suits your healthcare needs and budget.

Medicare Advantage plans are required to offer at least the same level of coverage as Original Medicare but can provide additional benefits like dental, vision, and hearing coverage. However, you may be restricted to a network of doctors and may need referrals to see specialists, depending on the plan you choose. For a more detailed understanding, you can visit our page outlining everything you need to know about Medicare Advantage.

What is the Maximum Out-of-Pocket for Medicare Part C?

One of the key features of Medicare Part C plans is the cap on out-of-pocket expenses for medical services, which is not available in Original Medicare. This cap provides a safety net by limiting the amount you have to spend on covered healthcare services in a year.

The maximum out-of-pocket limit can vary from plan to plan but is set by Medicare. In 2023, the limit for Medicare Advantage plans was set at $8,300 for in-network services and $12,900 for combined in-network and out-of-network services. Once you reach this limit, the plan covers 100% of covered medical services for the rest of the year. It’s essential to note that these limits do not include monthly premiums, prescription drugs, or services from non-network providers if not covered by the plan.

medicare part c

At What Age Will a Person Normally Enroll in Medicare Part C?

Generally, individuals become eligible to enroll in Medicare Part C at the age of 65, which aligns with the eligibility age for Medicare. However, younger individuals with certain disabilities or those with End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) or Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) may also qualify for Medicare, and thus Medicare Advantage, before age 65.

During the initial enrollment period for Medicare, which starts three months before your 65th birthday, includes your birth month, and extends three months after, you can choose to enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan. It’s important to evaluate your health care needs and preferences when considering a Medicare Advantage plan. For more information about what Medicare Advantage plans entail, you can read What is a Medicare Advantage Plan.

Call HealthPlusLife and Make the Most Out of Medicare Part C Open Enrollment

Understanding the specifics of Medicare Part C and Medicare open enrollment is vital for making the right healthcare choices. From knowing when you can enroll to understanding the plan’s coverage and costs, this knowledge empowers you to select a plan that best fits your healthcare needs and lifestyle. Get the help of experts with HealthPlusLife today by calling 888-828-5064 or contacting us online. We’re here to help.

Johanna Karlsson
Johanna Karlsson is a veteran health and life insurance professional licensed in 50 states. She relocated from the countryside in the south of Sweden and has not looked back. After coming to the United States to attend university, she gained her degree in Public Relations. She brought her public relations skills to a local international health insurance where she discovered a new passion in insurance. After years with that company, Johanna now joins HealthPlusLife to help build a team of licensed insurance agents ready to meet your insurance needs.