Medicare Open Enrollment ends December 7, 2020, and there are a lot of changes that will impact Medicare Advantage plans and Part D coverage options for those ages 65+.
- Premium and deductible costs – The standard premium for Medicare Part B was projected to increase; however, the Federal Government enacted a short-term spending bill with a provision limiting the increase for 2021. The Part B deductible has traditionally increased each year, but the Federal Government has not yet announced one for 2021. Part A premiums have trended upwards over time and they will go up again for 2021, with exact amounts being finalized late in the year. For accurate details, take time to discuss changes with your Medicare provider.
- Expanded telehealth options for Medicare Advantage plans – Medicare Advantage plans now cover a broader range of telehealth services. During the COVID-19 pandemic, many members nationwide used telehealth services to receive virtual care from the safety of their homes. This expansion could mean more telehealth options for you in 2021.
- Guaranteed issue of Medicare Advantage plans for those with ESRD – Medicare Advantage plans will be guaranteed issue for all Medicare beneficiaries, including those with ESRD starting in 2021. The 21st Century Cures Act resulted in giving people with ESRD access to any Medicare Advantage plan in their area. If this is you, then that means you now have a choice when looking at the coverage options which best meet your needs.
- Updated Medicare Part D initial coverage limit and the closing of the donut hole – The donut hole is a gap in prescription drug coverage that causes you to potentially pay more for prescription drugs, depending on what Part D plan you choose. For 2021, the Part D initial coverage limit is $4,130, up from $4,020 in 2020. For 2021, the out-of-pocket threshold is $6,550, up from $6,350 in 2020. Also, if you reach the donut hole phase, your drug discount for brand name and generic drugs is 75%.
Understanding Medicare and selecting the proper coverage is important to ensure you remain on your financial path. Call today with questions, changes, and to ensure your medical plan will be enough coverage for whatever comes your way.
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