Medicare open enrollment starts October 15. Here's what you need to know. | St. Louis Public Radio

Medicare open enrollment starts October 15. Here's what you need to know.

Oct 6, 2016

Medicare open enrollment starts Oct. 15 and ends Dec. 7, 2016. 

Ahead of that time, St. Louis on the Air welcomed Julie Brookhart, a public affairs specialist with the Kansas City regional office of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, to highlight changes and answer your questions about Medicare.

"Open enrollment is the one time of year for Medicare beneficiaries who are already in a plan or have a prescription drug plan to look at the options for next year and change their plan," Brookhart said.

Julie Brookhart
Credit Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio

Brookhart said it is suggested for anyone enrolled in Medicare to do this because they might find a more cost-effective plan. 

By Sept. 30, every person enrolled in Medicare should have received a physical "annual notice of change" from their current Medicare plan. Enrollees should look at the premium price change. If you want to make a different choice, you can do that through a Medicare counselor or online yourself. 

You can find new plans online here

You can find a Medicare counselor online here

If you're uncomfortable using a computer to get this information, you can call 1-800-390-3330 (for Missouri) and 1-800-252-8966 (for Illinois) to make an appointment for in-person assistance or point you to an enrollment event, which is located in central locations throughout the states.

Brookhart also answered listener questions about spam masquerading as government communication, spousal health insurance and  how to switch from employer health insurance to Medicare. You can hear more about those answers here:

St. Louis on the Air brings you the stories of St. Louis and the people who live, work and create in our region. St. Louis on the Air host Don Marsh and producers Mary Edwards, Alex Heuer and Kelly Moffitt give you the information you need to make informed decisions and stay in touch with our diverse and vibrant St. Louis region.