Reminder: Medicare Open Enrollment Starts October 15

aging in place© Cecilie Arcurs / Getty Images Signature / Canva

PENNSYLVANIA — The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania has issued a reminder to older Pennsylvanians and Medicare beneficiaries that the annual open enrollment period begins Saturday, October 15, 2022, and ends Monday, December 7, 2022. Any new coverage selected, or changes made to existing benefits will take effect on January 1, 2023.

During open enrollment, new Medicare beneficiaries can sign up for Medicare Prescription Drug coverage and health plans to complement Medicare, and current Medicare beneficiaries can review and join, switch, or drop Medicare Advantage or Prescription Drug Coverage so their plan better meets their needs.

Help from PA MEDI (Pennsylvania Medicare Education and Decision Insight) is available through Pennsylvania’s 52 Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs). The specially trained counselors can assist beneficiaries with plan comparisons, help with enrollment in a new plan, and evaluate eligibility for any of Pennsylvania’s Medicare cost-saving programs.

PA MEDI’s service is free, confidential, and objective, providing easy-to-understand information about Medicare Advantage Plans, prescription drug plans, and Medicare Supplement plans. Counselors assist beneficiaries, their families and caregivers in making informed health insurance decisions that optimize cost-savings and access to health care benefits.

During this time of year, consumers may see or hear television and radio ads with celebrities endorsing Medicare Advantage plans’ extra benefits and free offers. Although these ads may mimic official Medicare communication, the ads are from brokers or agents who receive financial incentives to enroll beneficiaries in these plans. Consumers should be cautious when interacting with such advertisements, and are encouraged instead to seek trusted, unbiased help through their local Area Agency on Aging.

PA MEDI Counselors do not sell Medicare products but rather offer current, unbiased Medicare education to help people make the most informed choice about the Medicare options available to them.

Individuals can learn more about PA MEDI, events and programs, or becoming a volunteer on the Department of Aging’s website or by calling the PA MEDI Helpline at 1-800-783-7067, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Older adults can also call their local AAA.

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