The taste and smells of fall are in the air. Days are getting shorter, and the weather is getting cooler. While we often think of spring as a time for new beginnings, there are some important deadlines that can affect your health right around the corner.

One such date is Medicare’s annual enrollment period that begins October 15th and ends December 7th!

What is Medicare’s Annual Enrollment Period?

If you are trying to figure out what Medicare’s Annual Enrollment Period (AEP) is and why you should care, you aren’t alone. The annual period can seem a bit confusing to those who have already selected their plans or had someone else pick for them.

The AEP is the only time of the year that you can sign-up or switch your Medicare Advantage Plan or Medicare Part D plan. If you’re not satisfied with your current plan and miss this chance to switch, you have to wait for the next AEP.

If you are happy with your current plan, you don’t have to do a thing! However, if you are thinking about switching or would like to see what else is out there, you should reach out to your Personal Benefits Manager.

Of course, Medicare Supplement Plans are not affected by the annual enrollment period–unless, of course, you are considering moving to a Medicare Advantage Plan.

Why Might You  Want to Consider Medicare Advantage?

Medicare Advantage Plans are Medicare plans that are offered by private insurance companies. These plans typically have low or zero premiums. You keep paying your Part B premiums.

Although Medicare Advantage Plans do require seeing doctors on the networks provider list,  the benefits of these plans often outweigh this limitation. Consider your reduced expenses around premiums, prescription drug cost, and the fact your annual out-of-pocket expenses are capped.

The only time you can enroll or switch Medicare Advantage Plans is during the AEP.

What’s Next?

Don’t let the earlier nights and slower days keep you from making a decision that could affect your future. Our health is one of our most valuable assets and investments. Why not start the holiday season with the peace of mind of knowing you have the best possible plan?

This is our busiest time of the year so give us a call soon! Call us at 800-913-3416 for a consultation with one of our Personal Benefits Managers to get a better understanding of the available options. We’re here to help.

Wiley Long is founder and president of Medigap Advisors, and is passionate about helping people navigate the confusing waters of Medicare. He is the author of The Medicare Playbook: Designing Your Successful Health Coverage Strategy, a clear and simple explanation so you can make the most of your Medicare coverage.