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How to Change Medicare Plans

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If you are already enrolled in Original Medicare (Medicare Parts A & B) and want to switch to a Medicare Advantage Plan (Medicare Part C), or switch from one Medicare Advantage Plan to another, you must make your new selections during the Annual Coordinated Election Period.

 

 

 

Annual Election Period (AEP)

Assuming you are already enrolled in Original Medicare, you are allowed to make a change to your Medicare “election” once each year during the Annual Election Period (October 15 to December 7). 
During this time you can join, switch to, or disenroll from a Medicare Advantage plan (Part C) or a Medicare Advantage plan with prescription drug coverage (Parts C and D).

Your changes will take effect January 1 of the following year.

During this time you can:

• Change to a Medicare Advantage Plan (Medicare Part C)
• Change to a Medicare Advantage Plan with prescription drugs (both Medicare Part C and D)
• Enroll in a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan (Medicare Part D)
• Change to a Medicare Advantage Plan

Your changes will take effect January 1 of the following year. 


Disenrollment

For New Medicare Advantage Plan Members

When you join a Medicare Advantage plan for the first time (such as when you first enroll in Medicare Part B), you have a lot more flexibility than you may later on. If after joining the plan you change your mind, you can drop it anytime within the first 12 months after enrolling and return to Original Medicare. At that time, you can add a Medicare Supplement (Medigap) policy and/or a stand-alone Medicare Prescription Drug Plan (PDP).

For Current Medicare Advantage Plan Members

During the Annual Disenrollment Period (January 1 – February 14 of each year), you can leave your Medicare Advantage plan and switch to Original Medicare. If you switch to Original Medicare during this period, you will have until February 14 to also join a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan to add drug coverage.

For Medicare Supplement Plan Members

Medicare Supplement plan members can disenroll anytime, with coverage usually expiring the first day of the following month. At that point, you would revert back to Original Medicare coverage, or you would be able to purchase another Medicare Supplement Plan.

 

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