Little-Known Special Election Period for People in MA Plans that Terminated in 2009

Little-Known Special Election Period for People in MA Plans that Terminated in 2009

Beneficiaries who were in a Medicare Advantage (MA) plan that terminated on December 31, 2009 have a Special Enrollment Period (SEP), from October 1, 2009 to January 31, 2010, which allows them to enroll in another MA plan or return to Original Medicare and enroll in a stand-alone Part D drug plan. This SEP has been extended to February 28, 2010. Beneficiaries should have received a notice from Medicare explaining the extended SEP and encouraging them to sign up for another MA plan or Part D plan with Original Medicare. Beneficiaries who do not sign up by February 28, 2010 may have to wait until this year’s Annual Election Period (November 15 – December 31) to make changes, which will be effective January 1, 2011. Beneficiaries who would like help comparing MA plans and Medicare Part D plans can contact their local HICAP at 1-800-434-0222.

For more about SEPs, see SEPs for Medicare Part C and D.

Beneficiaries who were in a Medicare Advantage (MA) plan that terminated on December 31, 2009 have a Special Enrollment Period (SEP), from October 1, 2009 to January 31, 2010, which allows them to enroll in another plan or return to Original Medicare. This SEP has been extended to February 28, 2010. If you were in an MA plan that terminated end of 2009 and you have not enrolled in another MA plan or a Medicare Part D plan, you may still do so before February 28, 2010. You may have received a notice from Medicare explaining the extended SEP and encouraging you to sign up. If you do not sign up by February 28, 2010, you may have to wait until this year’s Annual Election Period (November 15 – December 31) to make changes, which will be effective January 1, 2011. If you would like help comparing MA plans and Medicare Part D plans, please contact your local HICAP at 1-800-434-0222.

Our blogger Karen J. Fletcher is CHA's publications consultant. She provides technical expertise, writing and research on Medicare, health disparities and other health care issues. With a Masters in Public Health from UC Berkeley, she serves in health advocacy as a trainer and consultant. See her current articles.