Changes To Medicare Advantage in 2018

Medicare Advantage Plans have become very popular over the years, and like other insurance plans, changes occur every year. The most common changes are the list of drugs that are covered, how much your insurance company charges for them, premiums, and the percentage the plan pays towards your medical expenses. Changes can leave customers confused and with fewer options so it is important to look out for changes in the year ahead in order to get the proper care you need.

Changes in existing plan

Insurance companies will notify customers of changes in their existing Medicare Advantage plan occurring the following year. It is important to look over the changes of your current plan, and determine if these changes will cover your needs next year.

Loss of State Health Insurance Assistance Programs

State Health Insurance Assistance Programs, also known as SHIPS, aim to assist people with their Medicare options and compare Medicare Advantage plans. They provide counseling in every state, which is useful when trying to pick a Medicare plan for the year. These programs are funded by the federal government, but due to the Trump Administration’s budget cuts, it can be discontinued. The budget will eliminate funding of these state assistance programs by 94%, possibly eliminating them. However, EZ.Insure will continue to assist people with their Medicare and Medicare Advantage options even after these programs are gone. EZ.Insure always provides constant counseling, and help seeking the most ideal plan.

Network coverage

Insurance companies are constantly looking for doctors, hospitals, and other healthcare providers with cheaper rates to save money. The insurers negotiate with these providers to find the lowest cost each year, which is why plans change their network coverage every year. In the past couple of years, the network of providers has gotten smaller, with fewer specialists. It is important to make sure that your physician or specialists are included in your network year to year.

Loss of insurers

Reports from the Kaiser Family Foundation found that as of 2017, 147 counties across 14 states do not have Medicare Advantage plans. Some rural counties have been left with either only one or no insurers to choose from. If a Medicare Advantage plan is not an option, some people should consider a Medicare Supplement plan.

With all the changes occurring in the upcoming year, and loss of network coverage, it can be difficult to find a plan. At EZ Insure, we are dedicated to helping you compare and find a plan in your region. Contact us through email, replies@ez.insure, or enter your zip code in the link above to receive a quote. We make it that easy.

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