Your Healthy Family

Nov 16, 2012 10:14 AM by Marissa Torres

Looming Medicare deadline

Time is running out for Medicare patients. You have just two weeks to change your Medicare plan.

"If you haven't made a decision by December 7th, you're going to carry into 2013 what you have now. Which may or may not be the right plan for you," says United Healthcare representative Elizabeth McPherson.

There are two main Medicare plans; you can choose Original Medicare, Parts A and B, which is provided by the Federal government for those 65 and older.
Or you can choose Advantage Plan Part C. These plans are offered through private insurance companies and depending on who you go with, you get a variety of added perks, but at a higher cost.

"United Healthcare offers a discount on hearing aids; we offer a free gym membership to all members; we offer vision coverage. Medicare doesn't offer vision coverage."

Medicare members also have the option of prescription drug coverage with Part D.

"Part D is uniform across all plans and is Federally regulated. So you may have different co-pays and deductibles, but you're not going to have different thresholds of when you're going to go into the coverage gap, or sometimes known as the donut hole."

The medicare deadline is December 7th at midnight. The only exception is for people who've qualified for the Special Election Period or SEP. It's basically a Federal extension and those who qualify, should have already been notified.

For more information on Medicare plans, the Federal government has set up a special page to answer questions at

You can also check out United Healthcare's Medicare options at



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