Whether you’ve just turned 65 years old or have a disability, getting on a health and drug plan under Medicare can be a good option for your health care needs. There are distinct windows of time during the year in which you are eligible for Medicare health and drug plan enrollment, and these depend on which stage of enrollment you are in at the time. At Rochester, NY’s Hurley Care Solutions, they provide Medicare counseling and other elder care planning resources. Here, the team explains the scenarios for when you are eligible for Medicare’s Advantage and/or Prescription Drug Plan, and when you can enroll.
If you are turning or have just turned 65, you are eligible for Medicare enrollment in Part C and/or Part D. The eligibility period lasts for seven months, with the window beginning three months before you turn 65, lasting through the month of your 65th birthday, and ends three months after you turn 65. Once you enroll, coverage begins on the first day of the following month. If you enroll before your 65th birthday, coverage begins the day you turn 65.
If you are newly eligible for Medicare’s health and/or drug plans because of a disability, you can likewise enroll during a seven-month window. The window starts three months before your 25th month of receiving disability benefits, lasts through the 25th month, and ends three months after that 25th month. Once you enroll, coverage begins on the first day of the following month. If you enroll in the three-month period before your 25th month, coverage will begin on the first day of your 25th month.
If you have been eligible for the health and/or drug plans because of a disability and you have also just turned 65 years old, you may make changes to your plan, including switching between the Advantage and Prescription Drug plans as necessary. These changes must also be made within a period that begins three months before you turn 65, lasts through the month of your 65th birthday, and ends three months after your 65th birthday.
Open enrollment for Medicare Advantage and Medicare prescription drug coverage occurs twice a year, usually between October and December, and again between January and February. During these periods, you can switch between plans as per your elder care needs. This could mean adding or dropping drug coverage, switching drug coverage plans, or reverting to the original Medicare plan.
For any help with your health and drug plan Medicare enrollment or other elder care planning needs, contact Hurley Care Solutions at (585) 471-5239, or visit their website.