Indy Style

The importance of annual enrollment for Medicare recipients

Make changes to your Medicare coverage and get the plan you need.

Open enrollment is happening right now and to help guide us in the process, we’ve enlisted the help of Tom Leix, For UnitedHealthcare Medicare & Retirement in Indiana.

Medicare Annual Enrollment
• Oct. 15 – Dec. 7
• Why It Matters:
o Opportunity to make a changes to your Medicare coverage
o Health status, budget and plans can change each year

Shopping for Medicare
• Medicare is not one size fits all
• Look for the benefits that are important to you
• Find a plan that offers the resources to help you live a healthier life

For people enrolled in Medicare, why is annual enrollment so important?

• Choosing a Medicare plan is one of the most important decisions a person can make not only for their well-being, but also for their wallet.

o For most people, this is their only chance to make changes to their Medicare coverage for next year.

o If they don’t make an enrollment decision, they may be locked into their current plan next year.

• There is no one-size-fits-all approach when shopping for coverage, so people should take time to understand options available to them and what different Medicare plans offer.

• I encourage all people eligible for Medicare to take advantage of this opportunity and ensure they’re enrolled in a Medicare plan that will meet their health and budget needs for the year ahead.

What advice can you offer to help make the process of choosing a plan easier for people?

• While choosing a Medicare plan can feel complicated, it doesn’t have to be.

• Take the time to explore your options and understand the benefits and costs of each plan so you can find the coverage that works best for you. Start early and get your questions answered.

• To make shopping for Medicare coverage easier, consider the following:

o As a first step, check your current coverage to see if it still meets your needs.

o Determine if the plan is a good fit for your budget. Pay attention to more than just the monthly premium. You should also understand the other out-of-pocket costs, including the deductible, copays and coinsurance.

o Make sure your medications are covered. Even if you don’t expect to change plans, it’s important to make sure the prescriptions you take regularly will still be covered next year.

The Medicare plan you select can have a major impact on your health and well-being. What are some things people should look for in a Medicare plan to help them stay healthy?

• In addition to providing access to doctors and hospitals, your Medicare coverage can also help you live a healthier life and achieve your health goals.

o Confirm your preferred doctors and hospitals are available through the plan you’re considering.

o Second, don’t forget about dental, vision and other additional benefits. For people on Medicare, many are surprised to find that Original Medicare doesn’t cover prescription drugs and most dental, vision and hearing services. But many Medicare Advantage plans do.

o Finally, take advantage of wellness programs. Many people are surprised to learn that their plan offers benefits, programs and resources that can support them in their efforts to live a healthy life. For example, many UnitedHealthcare Medicare Advantage plans provide access to wellness and fitness benefits, like Renew Active.

People are facing some pretty important decisions about their Medicare coverage in the weeks ahead. What are some resources they should be aware of if they’re looking for help or support as they make their decisions?

• There are a lot of great resources out there to make the process of choosing a Medicare plan easier:

o If people would like more information about UnitedHealthcare plans, they can visit or call 800-711-0686 (TTY 711).

o For more information about Medicare, visit