Medicare Open Enrollment Season: What to Know; What to Do

Every year I look forward to the major events of the year; Independence Day, Thanksgiving, Christmas and Medicare Part D Open Enrollment.

The annual open enrollment for Medicare starts Saturday and runs through December 7 for those who are 65 and over.

HICAP offers free and unbiased counseling and information on Medicare issues. "But you need to learn these things so you don't end up paying more than you have to and get the plan that's best for you".

The first step in making your choice matter is reviewing your current Medicare health plan and analyzing how much you've spent on health care during the past year, including hospital expenses, pharmacy costs and doctor bills.

With a wrinkled brow, Carl Schrand, a longtime Kettering resident and World War II veteran, said he may re-shop his coverage during the annual enrollment period to make sure he's getting the best deal.

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However, with wind gusts up to 120 miles per hour Friday morning, it still posed a significant risk for those in its path. A direct hit by Matthew, he said , could lead to "massive destruction" on a level unseen since Hurricane Andrew in 1992.


The Minnesota River Area Agency on Aging Inc. will once again be assisting Medicare beneficiaries with their 2017 Medicare plan research and enrollment.

Any Medicare Advantage or prescription drug plan (Part D) must be made during the open enrollment time so coverage can begin without interruption on January 1, 2017.

This means about one-third of all Medicare enrollees will be in a Medicare Advantage plan in 2017.

About Health Alliance Plan Health Alliance Plan (HAP) is a Michigan-based, nonprofit health plan that provides health coverage to more than 675,000 members and companies of all sizes.

Compared to Original Medicare, Medicare Advantage plans often include lower copays, lower or no deductibles, and zero or low monthly plan premiums - although you must continue to pay your Part B premiums.

  • Ismael Montgomery