Last chance to change your medicare drug plan

On Friday, Dec. 6, between 1 and 4 p.m. volunteers with the State Health Insurance Benefits Advisers will be at the Orcas library to help Orcas residents review their Medicare options to see if they need to make any changes before this year’s open enrollment ends on Saturday, Dec. 7. If you aren’t able to come to the clinic, you can still make an appointment to meet with a SHIBA volunteer in their office at the Medical Clinic. Call 360-376-5892 to schedule an appointment.

So far this year at the walk-in clinic many clients have discovered that they can save money by changing their Part D insurance. Savings have been as high as $2,000, with many people saving several hundred dollars.

Bring a list of the prescription medicines you take, including the dosage for each, and your Medicare card. Our volunteers will show you how much you are likely to pay for drugs and insurance in 2019 and help you sign up for a new plan if needed.

Each year between Oct. 15 and Dec. 7 you are given a chance to review your Medicare drug and Medicare Advantage plans to see if they still work for you. There are many reasons why last year’s plan may not work for the next year:

Your health may have changed; the prescription drugs you take may have changed; your plan may no longer cover one or more of your medicines; your plan may have changed the drugs that it covers; your plan may increase the price for your drugs next year.

Failing to review your plan each year could mean paying more than you need to. Save that money for yourself instead of sending it to the insurance companies. SHIBA volunteers help island residents save money.

SHIBA is operated under the auspices of the Washington Department of Insurance. Our volunteers provide free, confidential and unbiased Medicare insurance assistance