Open enrollment season is upon us! This is the fourth and final entry in our series of blogs summarizing the material from our #getcovered tweet chat and highlighting important facts about open enrollment.
Remember that you can always get more in depth information about insurance via the OncoLink Health Insurance webinar series, available now, www.oncolink.org/insurance. All modules are available to listen to on demand and are free of charge!
We are QUICKLY approaching open enrollment deadlines. A quick reminder that Medicare open enrollment ends December 7th and Affordable Care Act (ACA/”Obamacare) open enrollment ends December 15th.
Do yourself a favor and start researching your options now—not an hour before enrollment ends.
What resources are available to help me with open enrollment?
- For ACA plans, start with healthcare.gov
- Navigators/enrollment assistors may also be available in your area. Click here to see what assistance is available in your area.
- For Medicare, start with the Medicare plan finder, which can search for Medicare part D (prescription drug plans), Medicare Advantage plans and Medigap (supplemental) plans available in your area. This tool can also help you compare your options, costs and network of providers.
- Utilize SHIP counseling services. SHIP is a free health benefits consulting service for people with Medicare. SHIP counselors are not paid by specific plans and are not insurance brokers—so they offer non biased, objective information about your health insurance options.
What other organizations can help me understand more about health insurance options?
- Triage Cancer Resources on Health Insurance: Triage Cancer works to address cancer-related health disparities through the delivery of cancer survivorship education, particularly information related to accessing care. http://triagecancer.org/healthinsurance
- The Kaiser Family Foundation: A leader in health policy analysis and health journalism, the Kaiser Family Foundation is dedicated to filling the need for trusted information on national health issues. https://www.kff.org
- Cancer Legal Resource Center: Provides cancer related legal information and resources nationwide. http://cancerlegalresources.org
- American Cancer Society: publishes Managing Your Health Insurance
- Cancer Support Community publishes Health Insurance for Cancer Patients
I’d also encourage you to seek out your oncology social worker, financial navigator or advocate at your treatment site for more assistance, counseling and education. It is so important that you and your caregivers understand how your insurance works, what changes you can make during open enrollment and how your care may be affected by changes to your coverage. Thanks for reading our open enrollment blog series. Here is hoping it helps you make informed health insurance coverage decisions this year!