Medicare Learning Center

Medicare Basics by Optima Health

New to Medicare?

Please watch our video about Medicare and learn about the four parts of Original Medicare, Part C – Medicare Advantage Plans, and Part D – Prescription Drug coverage.

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Medicare Enrollment Periods

There are several enrollment periods for Medicare. Each year there is the annual election period October 15 through December 7 when everyone can change their plan and with coverage effective January 1. There are also special election periods during the year when individuals can enroll in a Medicare plan. Special election periods occur for example when you lose employer coverage, when you turn 65, and if you have a special situation such as you move out of the service area of your current plan.

Enrollment Periods
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Original Medicare vs. Medicare Advantage

Original Medicare is the standard hospital (Part A) and medical (Part B) individual coverage offered by the federal government. Original Medicare does not cover some routine services, such as vision and dental.

Medicare Advantage (Part C) plans are offered through private insurance companies, such as Optima Health. The plans offer a full range of benefits beyond the Part A and Part B coverage you get from Original Medicare.

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Turning Age 65?

If you are turning age 65, you have a seven-month initial election period to enroll. This includes the three months before your birth month, the month you turn 65, and the three months after your birth month.

Enrollment Periods
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Understanding Medicare Coverage for Caregivers

We help caregivers make the most out of Medicare coverage when selecting the right plan for a spouse, parent, friend, or relative. A caregiver may assist a Medicare recipient with the enrollment process. Enrolling and making medical decisions on behalf of someone requires a Power of Attorney.

Caregivers can receive guidance on what to arrange by contacting Medicare at 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227) or Optima Health at 757-552-7174 or 1-800-648-8420.

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Help with Prescription Drug Costs

People with limited resources and income may qualify for Extra Help to pay for their prescription drug costs. Extra Help is referred to as a low income subsidy (LIS) and helps pay for a part of your Part D monthly premium, annual deductible, and copayments.

Learn About Extra Help
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Frequently Asked Questions

Get answers to common questions about Medicare Advantage and understanding your Optima Medicare plan options.

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