Medicare beneficiaries should compare plans during open enrollment

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RALEIGH — N.C. Insurance Commissioner Mike Causey reminds Medicare beneficiaries to compare and evaluate their current plans and make necessary changes during the upcoming Open Enrollment Period.

Medicare plans and prices change. It is important for Medicare beneficiaries to take advantage of the Open Enrollment Period by contacting local Seniors’ Health Insurance Information Program (SHIIP) counselors to save money, improve coverage or both.

The Open Enrollment Period began and runs for eight weeks to give enough time to review and make changes to a person’s Medicare coverage. Changes must be made by Dec. 7 to guarantee your coverage will begin without interruption on Jan. 1, 2022.

It’s important to contact a local SHIIP counselor before making a decision about coverage because beneficiaries may be able to receive more affordable and better Medicare health and/or drug plan options. For example, even if a person is satisfied with their current Medicare Advantage or Part D plan, there may be another plan in your area that covers health care and/or drugs at a better price.

SHIIP is a division of the North Carolina Department of Insurance and offers free, unbiased information about Medicare, Medicare prescription drug coverage, Medicare Advantage, long-term care insurance and other health insurance issues. In addition to helping Medicare beneficiaries compare and enroll in plans during the Open Enrollment Period, SHIIP counselors can help people find out if they are eligible for Medicare cost savings programs.

You can get one-on-one help from a local SHIIP office by calling the Chatham County Council on Aging at 919-542-4512 or 919-742-3975.

For more information about SHIIP and the Medicare Open Enrollment Period, call 1-855-408-1212 or visit www.ncshiip.com.

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