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Medicare Advantage 2024 Information for seniors. Depending on where you live, there are from 15 to 74 different Medicare Advantage (MA) plans to choose from. It can be overwhelming to make what is a very important decision. Here are tips to help you start the process of finding the best Medicare Advantage plan for 2024. Questions to ask:
NOTICE: The Association does NOT sell or recommend any specific Medicare plans. We provide the following information to help you make better choices. Medicare is a NATIONAL program but Medicare plan choices are LOCAL.
The Association makes available a national online directory listing local Medicare insurance agents. You simply enter a Zip Code to see who is listed in your area. If you find one you like (or more), you can connect with them directly. NO PERSONAL INFORMATION is entered or gathered.
Use our Checklist below to help you find the best coverage.
It depends on where you live. According to the Association’s analysis, here’s how many plans are available for the specified Zip Code (shown in brackets).
There are important differences between each type of Medicare Advantage (MA) plan available today. Here are the 3 letters to look for when comparing your options:
The following will help you better compare your many 2024 MA plan choices.
1. Are your preferred doctors, hospitals, and pharmacies included in the plan’s network?
This will depend on the type of plan you look at. An HMO plan generally specifies who (and what) is in-network. This can be very important should you have specific specialists you currently use. Or, if you have health conditions when you want to see a specialist. For example, the Mayo Clinic recently announced they would no longer accept Medicare Advantage plan patients.
2. Does the MA plan allow you to visit a non-network provider?
Some plans permit you to see out-of-network doctors. Others don’t. Some will have you pay more money out of pocket for these visits. Ask for details.
3. Does the plan cover prescription drugs?
Today, the majority of Medicare Advantage plans include prescription drug coverage (Part D). There can be co-pays. And, make sure the drugs you take are included under the plan you’re considering and what you will have to pay for them.
4.Does the plan offer fitness benefits such as free gym membership?
Many plans do and these can be a great reason to pick a particular plan. But ask which gyms accept the particular plan.
5. Ask for specifics about dental, vision and hearing benefits?
Most plans will tell you that they provide for these. But the specific benefits can vary. Take dental. Plans generally will cover a check-up. But some plans will even cover more expensive services like implants and periodontal. So, if you have dental needs, it is very important to ask to see specifically what is included as well as plan limits.
6. Plan costs and your maximum annual exposure?
We probably should have put this first. But, we assume cost is something you’ll ask about. MA plans have a yearly cap on how much you’ll pay out of pocket. For 2024, the out-of-pocket maximum for Medicare Part C plans is $8,850. Note that some plans set lower limits.
7. Are there MA plans to help you with Medicare out-of-pocket costs?
Here’s where it really pays to speak with a Medicare insurance professional, If you have special health care needs, you might consider a Medicare Special Needs Plan (SNP). This is a type of MA plan. Some people are eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid and can enroll in a Dual-Eligible SNP (D-SNP). Those who qualify are either older adults with low income or people living with a disability or end-stage renal disease.
You can spend hours doing your own research comparing Medicare Advantage plans. Or you can speak to a local, licensed agent.
Here are questions to ask the agent before deciding if you want to work together:
When you have a good agent, let him or her compare your options to find the coverage that’s right for you. They earn a commission only when you enroll in a plan. This is built into the plan costs. The agent can not negotiate or get you a special deal.
Agents work at no cost and no obligation to you. Find one to get the benefit of great counsel along with great choices.