There are new Medicare Advantage plans in my area offering lots of zeros. Should I consider them?
There are always new plans entering the Medicare market.
Some of these plans offer great incentives to join. They have attractive copays, low cost or zero copays for medications, an attractive OTC benefit which offers aspirin, vitamins, band aids, etc, transportation, free Silversneakers membership and the list goes on.
Some of these plans do well and become competitive in the long run.
Some fail soon after they enter the market. I recall one such plan decided to reduce compensation to a physician half way through the year, in the middle of their contact.
Ask yourself the following questions:
- What is the physician and specialist network like?
- What do the physicians in your area feel about this new plan? Are the physicians getting paid on their claims?
- What is the star rating?
Is the plan administered by a parent company that has experience with other Medicare plans? In others words, a well-oiled machine with an established customer service department?
Sometimes looking at all the zeros is not enough to decide to change your Medicare plan. You need to consider the Physician network, access to care such as specialist, Hospital Network, Urgent Care Network and Pharmacy Network. Has your plan been good to you thus far? If it has, then why change? If it hasn’t then that is what Open Enrollment is for.
This information is brought to you by The Medicare Lady, Darlene Swaffar at seniormedicalchoices.com.