Medicare Enrollment Is Open Now
During Medicare open enrollment, current and prospective beneficiaries are able to update or initiate Part D coverage as needed. This year’s open enrollment will take place from October 15th to December 7th, allowing seniors to make decisions regarding their 2019 Medicare coverage.
While no action is required if current beneficiaries are happy with their coverage, formularies can change from year to year and it is highly recommended every beneficiary review their coverage annually. In order to guide Nebraska’s seniors through this sometimes difficult process, my office will conduct our annual Senior Services Fairs in Scottsbluff and Grand Island.
The Scottsbluff Senior Services Fair will take place at the Lied Scottsbluff Public Library located at 1809 3rd Avenue from 9:30 a.m. to noon (MT) on November 14th. The Grand Island Senior Services Fair will be held on November 15th from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. (CT) at the Grand Generation Center located at 304 E 3rd Street.
Representatives from Social Security, the VA, the Nebraska Senior Health Insurance Information Program (SHIIP,) and my office will be on-site to answer any questions or concerns regarding these agencies and programs. We recommend Nebraskans seeking assistance with Medicare Part D at the Grand Island event make appointments by calling Nebraska SHIIP at 1-800-234-7119.
In addition, if you plan to seek assistance with choosing a Part D plan at either of these events, please be sure to bring a full list of your prescriptions and dosages to ensure representatives can help you choose the best plan to cover your recurring prescriptions.
For those who may not be able to travel to one of these events, I also hold an annual Medicare teleconference through which a representative from Medicare can answer your questions about open enrollment. Residents of the Third District who would like to be included in this annual teleconference are encouraged to call my Grand Island office at 308-384-3900 prior to November 13th.
For additional information, seniors may visit Medicare.gov to learn more about available options, check current enrollment, and apply for new coverage. Nebraskans can also speak with experts by calling Nebraska SHIIP at 1-800-234-7119 or Medicare at 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227.)
I sincerely hope seniors needing advice or assistance will utilize one or more of these resources to receive coverage through this vital program. Medicare Part D was designed to improve coverage and keep costs down by requiring insurers to compete. Taking an active role in reviewing your coverage improves your ability to benefit from this competition.
As a member of the House Ways and Means Committee which has jurisdiction over Medicare, I will continue to ensure its benefits remain available for future generations of Americans.