Changes in businesses are very stressful to their customers. It may scare their customers. Right now, the most talked about topic is the change in the Medicare Part D Enrollment Period. It will now start October 15, 2011, and end December 7, 2011. This is 24 days less than in 2010. Why is there a change in the enrollment period, what will be the changes which will be introduced?
The change in the Medicare part D enrollment period is due to the lobby of insurance companies that wish to further limit the amount of time a person can switch part D providers. As a person’s drug regimen changes or as drugs become available in generic the part D provider that offers the lowest rates can change. It is important to review part D each year during the open enrollment period.
Many insurance companies will change a plan or discontinue a plan and automatically enroll their customer in a new or updated plan. This can be beneficial to some customers but can also be disadvantageous. It is important to review your part D each year. This is a statement issued by a Part D provider:
“Beginning next year the prescription drug program, run by United HealthCare on Guam, will offer only one plan, instead of two. The only option will be the “Preferred Plan,” which will cost $11.20 a month. A Medicare beneficiary currently enrolled in the “Enhanced Plan,” will automatically be enrolled in the “Preferred Plan” on Dec. 31, according to the Public Health statement.”
As you can see from the statement above you can be placed in a “new” part D plan without signing up again or filling out more paperwork. This is done by the insurance company to make it “easier” for their clients. It is perhaps easier for the existing clients because they are not required to fill out additional paperwork or review the details of the new plan they are being enrolled in.
The benefits and costs of prescription drug plans need to be evaluated on an individual basis, the Part D plan that was the least expensive for you in 2011 may not be the least expensive plan for 2012. The insurance companies are in business to make money and they will organize the plans to benefit their bottom line.
Remember everyone on Medicare must have a prescription drug plan or risk being penalized for late enrollment. Many individuals turning 65 do not need extensive prescription drug benefits and desire a plan with the lowest monthly premium. That is why there must be a change in the enrolment period.
Keep in mind that when insurance companies change the premium to copay ratio it causes the best plan for an individual to change. In closing no matter what your prescription drug regimen is it is necessary to reevaluate your Part D prescription drug coverage every year during the open enrollment period. To simply put, the change is for the benefit of their customers.