Those individuals who have Medicare and Medicaid coverage, are often referred to as having “dual” coverage.
One advantage that dual-covered beneficiaries have been given in the past is the ability to change plans each month of the year. Equaling twelve enrollment periods every year. Whereas, Medicare beneficiaries who do not have dual-coverage, are only given one enrollment period each year. This annual enrollment period is typically from October 15 through December 7th.
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the government entity that administers the Medicare program, has announced that coming in 2019, dual-covered beneficiaries are being given only 5 enrollment periods. These enrollment periods are now quarterly, rather than monthly.
Dual-covered beneficiaries are given a Q1, Q2, Q3, and Q4/AEP election period, as well as an OEP (Open Enrollment Period).
In addition to the reduction in election periods, there has been an Annual Dis-enrollment Period (ADP) that is also no longer going to exist.
The above election periods are in addition to the typical Special Enrollment Periods, which is an election period given for certain qualifying events.
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