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The 2021 Medicare Part D annual Open Enrollment Period (AEP) ends today, Monday, December 7th. During this final day of the 2021 AEP, you can still join, change, or drop your Medicare Part D or Medicare Advantage plan coverage.

Category: Enrollment Topics
Published on 2020-12-07 01:52:44


The 2021 annual Medicare Open Enrollment Period (AEP) ends at midnight tonight, Monday, December 7th.

During this final day of the 2021 AEP, you can still join, change, or drop your Medicare Part D or Medicare Advantage plan coverage.

After December 7th, most people will only have a limited opportunity to change their 2021 Medicare prescription drug plan coverage before next year’s 2022 Medicare Part D and Medicare Advantage plan AEP.

For an overview of all 2021 Medicare Part D plans or Medicare Advantage plans available in your area, you can use our Medicare Part D prescription drug plan finder (PDP-Finder) or  Medicare Advantage plan finder (MA-Finder) tools.

For example, here is our PDP-Finder showing all Medicare Part D plans available in Texas (you can change the state to see plans in your area): PDP-Finder.com/TX.

Here is an example of our MA-Finder showing Medicare Advantage plans available in ZIP code 15205, Allegheny County, PA (you can change the ZIP code to see plans in your area): MA-Finder.com/15205.


A few highlights of the new 2021 Medicare plan coverage:

Need someone to speak with about your Medicare plan options?

If you find yourself overwhelmed with all your 2021 Medicare plan choices, you can always telephone Medicare at 1-800-633-4227 and choose to speak with a Medicare representative. Once connected, ask the representative to help you evaluate your 2021 Medicare Part D and Medicare Advantage plan options.

Should you decide to change Medicare plans, a Medicare representative can also enroll you in any Medicare Advantage plan or Medicare prescription drug plan directly over the telephone. The enrollment process only takes a few minutes and includes an enrollment confirmation number (that you should write down to record your proof of enrollment).


Staying with the same Medicare Part D or Medicare Advantage plan into 2021?

No action is needed.  If you wish to stay in your current Medicare plan, you do not need to do anything during the 2021 annual Open Enrollment Period and you will be automatically re-enrolled into your existing Medicare plan for another year, along with any changes that your current 2020 Medicare plan may have made for 2021.


How is your 2020 Medicare plan changing in 2021?

Again, remember that your 2020 Medicare plan probably will have some changes in 2021 (new premium, new deductible, new drug coverage, new co-payments, different pharmacies, different doctors, different supplemental benefits) – so please be sure that you understand these changes – and be sure your Medicare plan is still being offered in 2021.

You can use our online 2020/2021 Medicare Part D plan compare tool (PDP-Compare) or 2020/2021 Medicare Advantage plan comparison tool (MA-Compare) to provide you with a quick overview of how any 2020 Medicare Part D plan or Medicare Advantage plan is changing in 2021.


What happens if my 2020 Medicare plan is no longer offered in 2021?

Important: About 1.1 million people are currently enrolled in a 2020 Medicare Advantage plan that is being discontinued in 2021.  If your Medicare plan is non-renewing or being discontinued in 2021 (and not consolidated or merged into another Medicare plan), and you do not join another Medicare Part D or Medicare Advantage plan during the AEP, you could be without prescription coverage for all of 2021.

However, if your plan is being discontinued, you will be granted a Special Enrollment Period starting December 8, 2020 through February 28, 2021 during which you can join any available 2021 Medicare Part D plan or Medicare Advantage plan.

Remember, if you use this Service Area Reduction Special Enrollment Period (or SAR SEP), your Medicare plan coverage begins on the first day of the month following your enrollment.  So if your 2020 plan is no longer offered in 2021, and you want coverage starting January 1st, you will need to submit an enrollment application on or before December 31st.


What can I do if I missed the 2021 AEP?

(1) You may be able to use a Special Enrollment Period to change your 2021 plan coverage outside of the AEP.

As noted above, if you are enrolled in a discontinued Medicare Part D or Medicare Advantage plan, you can use the SAR SEP to join a 2021 Medicare plan.

If you were affected by a hurricane or fire or other natural disaster, you may be able to use the Natural Disaster Special Enrollment Period that will allow you more time beyond December 7th to choose a 2021 Medicare Part D or Medicare Advantage plan.

You can click here to read more about Special Enrollment Periods -- with other situations allowing you to change Medicare plans outside of the AEP (or visit: https://Q1FAQ.com/561.html).

(2)  The Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period (MA-OEP) begins on January 1 and continues through March 31st.

During the MA-OEP, you will be granted another opportunity beyond the AEP to (1) switch Medicare Advantage plans or (2) drop your Medicare Advantage plan and return to original Medicare Part A and Part B, combined with a stand-alone Medicare Part D prescription drug plan (PDP).


Already looking toward 2022?

Sign up for our 2022 Medicare Part D Reminder Service. 
If you would like us to update you as information becomes available on the 2022 Medicare Part D program, please click here to sign-up for our free 2022 email Reminder Service.  And you can also click here if you would like to receive our periodic Medicare Part D Newsletter.  As always, your email information will not be shared with any third parties and there is no cost for our Reminder email or Newsletter.


Still have questions that we might be able to answer?

You can click on the following link and send us your question:
https://q1medicare.com/Helpdesk.php






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Tips & Disclaimers
  • The Medicare Advantage and Medicare Part D prescription drug plan data on our site comes directly from Medicare and is subject to change.
  • Medicare has neither reviewed nor endorsed the information on our site.
  • We provide our Q1Medicare.com site for educational purposes and strive to present unbiased and accurate information. However, Q1Medicare is not intended as a substitute for your lawyer, doctor, healthcare provider, financial advisor, or pharmacist. For more information on your Medicare coverage, please be sure to seek legal, medical, pharmaceutical, or financial advice from a licensed professional or telephone Medicare at 1-800-633-4227.
  • We are an independent education, research, and technology company. We are not affiliated with any Medicare plan, plan carrier, healthcare provider, or insurance company. We are not compensated for Medicare plan enrollments. We do not sell leads or share your personal information.
  • Benefits, formulary, pharmacy network, provider network, premium and/or co-payments/co-insurance may change on January 1 of each year. Our PDP-Compare.com and MA-Compare.com provide highlights of annual plan benefit changes.
  • The benefit information provided is a brief summary, not a complete description of benefits. For more information contact the plan.
  • Limitations, copayments, and restrictions may apply.
  • We make every effort to show all available Medicare Part D or Medicare Advantage plans in your service area. However, since our data is provided by Medicare, it is possible that this may not be a complete listing of plans available in your service area. For a complete listing please contact 1-800-MEDICARE (TTY users should call 1-877-486-2048), 24 hours a day/7 days a week or consult www.medicare.gov.
  • When enrolling in a Medicare Advantage plan, you must continue to pay your Medicare Part B premium.
  • Medicare beneficiaries with higher incomes may be required to pay both a Medicare Part B and Medicare Part D Income Related Monthly Adjustment Amount (IRMAA). Read more on IRMAA.
  • Medicare Advantage plans that include prescription drug coverage (MAPDs) are considered Medicare Part D plans and members with higher incomes may be subject to the Medicare Part D Income Related Monthly Adjustment Amount (IRMAA), just as members in stand-alone Part D plans. In certain situations, you can appeal IRMAA.
  • You must be enrolled in both Medicare Part A and Part B to enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan. Members may enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan only during specific times of the year. Contact the Medicare plan for more information.
  • If you are enrolled in a Medicare plan with Part D prescription drug coverage, you may be eligible for financial Extra Help to assist with the payment of your prescription drug premiums and drug purchases. To see if you qualify for Extra Help, call: 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227). TTY users should call 1-877-486-2048, 24 hours a day/ 7 days a week or consult www.medicare.gov; the Social Security Office at 1-800-772-1213 between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m., Monday through Friday. TTY users should call, 1-800-325-0778; or your state Medicaid Office.
  • Medicare evaluates plans based on a 5-Star rating system. Star Ratings are calculated each year and may change from one year to the next.
  • A Medicare Advantage Private Fee-for-Service plan (PFFS) is not a Medicare supplement plan. Providers who do not contract with the plan are not required to see you except in an emergency.
  • Disclaimer for Institutional Special Needs Plan (SNP): This plan is available to anyone with Medicare who meets the Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) level of care and resides in a nursing home.
  • Disclaimer for Dual Eligible (Medicare/Medicaid) Special Needs Plan (SNP): This plan is available to anyone who has both Medical Assistance from the State and Medicare. Premiums, co-pays, co-insurance, and deductibles may vary based on the level of Extra Help you receive. Please contact the plan for further details.
  • Disclaimer for Chronic Condition Special Needs Plan (SNP): This plan is available to anyone with Medicare who has been diagnosed with the plan specific Chronic Condition.
  • Medicare MSA Plans combine a high deductible Medicare Advantage Plan and a trust or custodial savings account (as defined and/or approved by the IRS). The plan deposits money from Medicare into the account. You can use this money to pay for your health care costs, but only Medicare-covered expenses count toward your deductible. The amount deposited is usually less than your deductible amount, so you generally have to pay out-of-pocket before your coverage begins.
  • Medicare MSA Plans do not cover prescription drugs. If you join a Medicare MSA Plan, you can also join any separate (stand-alone) Medicare Part D prescription drug plan
  • There are additional restrictions to join an MSA plan, and enrollment is generally for a full calendar year unless you meet certain exceptions. Those who disenroll during the calendar year will owe a portion of the account deposit back to the plan. Contact the plan provider for additional information.
  • Medicare beneficiaries may enroll through the CMS Medicare Online Enrollment Center located at www.medicare.gov.
  • Medicare beneficiaries can file a complaint with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services by calling 1-800-MEDICARE 24 hours a day/7 days or using the medicare.gov site. Beneficiaries can appoint a representative by submitting CMS Form-1696.