Resources available to help with Medicare enrollment

Medicare enrollment opened Monday. It runs until Dec. 7. Oklahomans have a few websites they can visit and phone numbers they can call for help.
by Jaclyn Cosgrove Published: October 18, 2012
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Residents enrolled in the original fee-for-service Medicare program can enroll in one of the 30 prescription drug plans offered in Oklahoma. The monthly premiums range from $15 to $118.60. Most of the plans are between $30 and $50.

“My best advice is, if you look at that list, you need to look beyond the premiums,” Moos said.

Residents can visit Medicare's website at www.medicare.gov to access several resources to help choose the right plan. One of the resources, “Medicare Plan Finder,” helps recipients find which plan might serve them best.

Moos said it's important to look at each plan's deductible. Using the plan finder on Medicare's website can help you with making that decision, he said. To help you identify the best and worst plans, the plan finder also provides star ratings for each plan, he said.

To use the tool, recipients will need to enter in information about each of their prescriptions, including the dosage, so it's helpful to have prescription bottles nearby, Moos said.

“If that seems a little overwhelming for someone, there is help out there,” Moos said.

by Jaclyn Cosgrove
Medical and Health Reporter
Jaclyn Cosgrove writes about health, public policy and medicine in Oklahoma, among other topics. She is an Oklahoma State University graduate. Jaclyn grew up in the southeast region of the state and enjoys writing about rural Oklahoma. She is...
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TO GET HELP

Residents who would like to talk to person about their plans can call the Medicare's toll-free help line at (800) 633-4227. During enrollment season, hundreds more operators are hired to help reduce wait times, Bob Moos said.

Residents can also call the Oklahoma Insurance Department, which offers benefits counseling through the state's health insurance assistance program. That number is (800) 763-2828.

Also, Medicare recipients should have received a “Medicare & You 2013 Handbook” in the mail. You can download a digital version of the handbook online to read on your e-Reader at www.medicare.gov/publications.

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