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Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period

What is the Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period?

The Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period is an extra time each year when you can make one (yes, just one) change to your existing Medicare Advantage plan. These changes include:

  • Moving to a different Medicare Advantage plan
  • Dropping your Medicare Advantage plan and staying with Original Medicare. If you do this and need drug coverage, you have until March 31 to add a Medicare Part D (prescription drug) plan

When is the Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period?

The Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period is January 1 to March 31. During the open enrollment period, you cannot add a Medicare Advantage plan if you do not have one already. You also cannot make changes to an existing prescription drug plan. The window where you can add Medicare Advantage or prescription drug plans is the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period or Annual Election Period, from October 15 to December 7 each year.

Remember, you need to be enrolled in Original Medicare (Part A and Part B)  before you’re eligible to sign up for any Medicare Advantage or prescription drug plan. If you do not yet have Original Medicare, check out your Medicare Enrollment options so you know when and how to sign up. If you’re turning 65 soon, it’s smart to start researching your coverage options now.

Understanding Medicare Advantage plans

If you are new to Medicare, you might be wondering what a Medicare Advantage plan is and how you get one. These plans are a great option if you need some coverage beyond what Original Medicare (Part A and Part B) offers.

For example, you might want dental, vision and hearing insurance. Or maybe you have regular medications and need prescription drug coverage, which you can’t get through Original Medicare. Knowing how the two options compare helps you get the most out of your coverage, so take a moment to see how Original Medicare differs  from Medicare Advantage.

After you sign up for Original Medicare, you have a few windows of time where you can add, change or drop a Medicare Advantage or prescription drug plan. These only apply if you want to make changes to your coverage. If you have a plan you are happy with, you can simply keep it without re-enrolling.

If you are moving or your plan’s service area changes, a Special Enrollment Period (SEP) accounts for these types of exceptions (and others). Our Medicare Advantage enrollment page  offers more details about all sign-up periods, including the SEP.

Medicare can seem complicated but it doesn’t have to be. Check out our Medicare Information section for details on enrollment, costs, options and coverage comparisons.

Compare Medicare Advantage plans now.​


Y0114_20_117143_U Aceptado por los CMS el 12/2/2019

Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield es el nombre comercial de: en Colorado, Rocky Mountain Hospital and Medical Service, Inc. Los productos del plan HMO están suscritos por HMO Colorado, Inc. En Connecticut: Anthem Health Plans, Inc. En Georgia: Blue Cross Blue Shield Healthcare Plan of Georgia, Inc. En Indiana: Anthem Insurance Companies, Inc. En Kentucky: Anthem Health Plans of Kentucky, Inc. En Maine: Anthem Health Plans of Maine, Inc. En Misuri (a excepción de 30 condados del área de Kansas City​​​​​​​): RightCHOICE® Managed Care, Inc. (RIT), Healthy Alliance® Life Insurance Company (HALIC) y HMO Missouri, Inc. RIT y ciertas afiliadas administran los beneficios que no son del plan HMO suscritos por HALIC y los beneficios del plan HMO suscritos por HMO Missouri, Inc. RIT; y ciertas afiliadas solo prestan servicios administrativos a planes autofinanciados y no suscriben beneficios. En Nevada: Rocky Mountain Hospital y Medical Service, Inc. Los productos del plan HMO están suscritos por HMO Colorado, Inc., cuyo nombre comercial es HMO Nevada. En New Hampshire: Anthem Health Plans of New Hampshire, Inc. Los planes HMO están administrados por Anthem Health Plans of New Hampshire, Inc. y suscritos por Matthew Thornton Health Plan, Inc. En Ohio: Community Insurance Company. En Virginia: Anthem Health Plans of Virginia, Inc. opera comercialmente con el nombre Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield en Virginia, y su área de servicio abarca todo Virginia con excepción de Fairfax, Vienna y el área este de State Route 123. En Wisconsin: Blue Cross Blue Shield of Wisconsin (“BCBSWI”), que suscribe o administra las pólizas del plan PPO y las pólizas de indemnización, y suscribe los beneficios fuera de la red de las pólizas POS ofrecidas por Compcare o WCIC; Compcare Health Services Insurance Corporation (Compcare) suscribe o administra las pólizas HMO y Wisconsin Collaborative Insurance Company (WCIC) suscribe o administra las pólizas HMO o POS de Well Priority. Licenciatarios independientes de Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Anthem es una marca comercial registrada de Anthem Insurance Companies, Inc. Los nombres y los símbolos de Blue Cross and Blue Shield son marcas comerciales registradas de Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. La utilización de los sitios web de Anthem constituye su aceptación de nuestros términos de uso.