(Placerville, CA) - Medicare Open Enrollment is October 15 through December 7, 2020. This enrollment period is one of the few times Medicare beneficiaries can change, enroll into or dis-enroll from a Part D drug plan or a Medicare Advantage Plan (such as an HMO). Changes to plans are effective January 1, 2021.
In 2020 in El Dorado County, there are 32 Medicare Part D drug plans available and five Medicare Advantage Part C plans. To help Medicare enrollees in El Dorado County understand their coverage options in 2021, the Health Insurance Counseling and Advocacy Program (HICAP) will provide two free, one-hour, virtual workshops. These workshops will focus on Medicare options available to El Dorado County residents. The workshops will be presented on:
To access either of the workshops, go to www.HICAPservices.net, scroll down to the El Dorado County section and look for "Free Medicare 2021 Updates Presentations". The workshops are offered as a webinar with slides, and as audio-only by telephone. No registration is required.
"Each year Medicare drug plans can and do change their list of covered drugs or the price of those drugs," said Rhoda Slagle, Regional Coordinator for the El Dorado County HICAP. "These changes can lead to considerably higher out-of-pocket costs for seniors if they stay with the same plan. Research shows that people who take the time to review their plan choices each year can often significantly reduce their prescription drug costs by switching to a different Part D drug plan."
"Those with a Medicare Advantage Plan should be aware that Medicare has recently added several new benefit options," said Slagle. "El Dorado County residents need to know which Medicare Advantage Plans are available in El Dorado County and that some plans may not include all of the benefits promoted in television ads."
El Dorado County HICAP can help Medicare beneficiaries review either their Part D drug plan choices or their Medicare Advantage Plan choices for 2021. During the COVID-19 pandemic all counseling sessions are provided by telephone. To request a phone appointment, call (530) 621-6169. The number of available appointments is limited, so calling early is recommended.
Throughout the year HICAP provides free, unbiased, individual counseling about Medicare to residents of El Dorado County. HICAP is not associated with any insurance company. The program works in partnership with older adult programs of the El Dorado County Health and Human Services Agency.
For information about other older adult services in El Dorado County, please visit https://www.edcgov.us/SeniorService.aspx.
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