Effective January 1st, 2019, the Open Enrollment Period (OEP) will make its way back to the market and provide Medicare beneficiaries the opportunity to make “like plan” changes to their Medicare health plan until March 31st, 2019. It will replace the Medicare Advantage Disenrollment Period (MADP) that started January 1st and continued through February 14th.
The OEP will be a one-time use election period where beneficiaries can disenroll from their current plan and switch to a different “like plan”. The effective date will be the first of the following month after the beneficiary’s signature date.
The following “like plan” changes are allowed during the 2019 OEP:
- MAPD to MAPD
- MAPD to Original Medicare and a Part D
- Original Medicare and a Part D to MAPD
- MA Only plan to MA Only plan
- MA Only plan to Original Medicare
- Original Medicare to MA Only plan
Beneficiaries returning to Original Medicare will have the opportunity to enroll into a Medicare Supplement plan, but they will be subject to underwriting as the OEP does not provide a Guarantee Issue situation. Also, they can only enroll in a plan with drug coverage if they had drug coverage with the plan they chose to disenroll from.
OEP is critical for those who failed to change plans during AEP or those who feel they made a poor choice after their new plan went into effect.
If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to our team at (800) 723-5228.