Medicare Annual Enrollment Period (AEP) Starts October 15th

October 14, 2013

October 15th marks the beginning of the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period (AEP) for 2014, which runs through December 7th. For seniors on Medicare, this is the time to evaluate current Medicare coverage — including the private Medicare supplemental plans they might be enrolled in — and decide whether to make changes or keep the coverage they have.

What might cause you to consider making changes? Extend Health fielded a survey this past weekend asking its customers who are currently enrolled in plans purchased on its private Medicare exchange whether they plan to re-evaluate or just keep the plans they have, and why.

Findings

Of the 449 respondents who completed the survey, 56.7% said they plan to reevaluate one or more of their existing plans and consider replacing one or more of them. Of those who will reevaluate, 23.8% cite their premiums increasing as their reason for reevaluating. However, 62.3% who said they will reevaluate their plans say they will do so simply because they want to confirm they have the best coverage available.

Not all respondents plan to reevaluate their plans: 37.5% said they plan to renew their existing plan or plans without going shopping. Among respondents who do not plan to reevaluate, 69.2% said it was because they are satisfied with their existing coverage.

Conclusion

Willingness to reevaluate plans indicates that Medicare retirees are actively engaged in gaining the best value and most fitting coverage for themselves, as opposed to simply deferring to the status quo and staying with existing plans.

Q1: The 2014 Medicare Annual Open Enrollment Period will begin on October 15, 2013. During the enrollment period, you have the option of renewing your existing private Medicare plans, purchasing new private plans (from your existing insurance provider or from a new provider) or dropping plans without replacing them. During the enrollment period, do you plan to:

Reevaluate one or more of my existing plans and possibly replace one or more of them

56.7%

Renew my existing or plans without reevaluating them

37.5%

Definitely replace one or more of my existing plans with a different plan

5.6%

Drop one or more of my plans without replacing them

0.2%

Q2: If you plan to reevaluate one or more of your existing plans, what is the most important reason prompting you to do so?

I just want to confirm that I have the best coverage 62.3%
My premiums increased 23.8%
My out of pocket expenses increased 6.6%
My prescription drugs have changed 3.0%
My current plan is no longer offered 2.6%
My benefits changed 1.7%

 

One Response to “Medicare Annual Enrollment Period (AEP) Starts October 15th”

  1. James Alfaro said

    Unlike other health efforts/exchanges that shall go nameless, but, we all know what I am talking about, my enrollment with Extend Health has been seamless, efficient and a totally professional experience. I am so thankful that IBM chose Extend Health to handle my retiree healthcare. Thank you EH ! and, thank you IBM.

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