Medicare Advantage

I’ve been enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan for several years, but I want to switch to traditional Medicare. Can I make that change during the Medicare Open Enrollment period?

Yes, you can elect to switch to traditional Medicare from your Medicare Advantage plan during the Medicare Open Enrollment period, which runs from October 15 to December 7 each year. Your coverage under traditional Medicare will begin January 1 of the following year. You can also make this change during the Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment period, which runs from January 1 through March 31. If you make this change and you want drug coverage, be sure to sign up for a Medicare stand-alone prescription drug plan (PDP), unless you have creditable drug coverage from another source. If you do not, and you decide to sign up for Part D coverage later on, you may face a penalty for late enrollment.

You may also want to consider purchasing a Medicare supplemental insurance policy, known as Medigap. Medigap policies help to pay your cost-sharing requirements under traditional Medicare. However, since you have been enrolled in Medicare Advantage for several years, Medigap insurers are not required to sell you a policy if you don’t meet the medical underwriting requirements. You may want to contact a few Medigap insurers directly to see if you will be able to purchase a Medigap policy when you switch to traditional Medicare.

While we have made every effort to provide accurate information in these FAQs, people should contact the health insurance Marketplace or Medicaid agency in their state for guidance on their specific circumstances.

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