Medicare Advantage plans in Mississippi are sold by private insurance companies under rules set by the federal Medicare program.
Medicare Advantage replaces Original Medicare (Parts A and B) , but offers the same Part A and Part B coverages as Original Medicare.
Along with Part A and B benefits, Medicare Advantage (also known as Part C) bundles additional services like dental, hearing, vision and prescription drug coverage.
All Mississippi residents eligible for Medicare had access to a $0 Medicare Advantage plan in 2023.
Medicare Advantage in Mississippi allows you to choose a private insurance company to offer your Medicare benefits. In return, you often get coverage that extends beyond Original Medicare. Examples include prescriptions, wellness, hearing, vision and dental coverage.
Unlike Original Medicare, Medicare Advantage plans have an out-of-pocket spending limit. Some companies also offer plans called Special Needs Plans. These plan types are designed for those with specific medical conditions, such as congestive heart failure, diabetes or end-stage renal disease. They offer disease-specific benefits that may include more medications on the prescription formulary and a person who coordinates wellness services.
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The average person paid a monthly premium of $17.68 for their Medicare Advantage plan in Mississippi in 2023, according to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. However, all Mississippians had access to at least $0 Medicare Advantage plan.
When evaluating the costs of a Medicare Advantage plan, there are several key considerations to look for. These include:
- Coinsurance: Medicare Advantage plans usually have a coinsurance or copayment you pay each time you see an in-network specialist or general healthcare provider.
- Premium: While not all Medicare Advantage plans have premiums, some do. You will pay this in addition to your Part B premium.
- Out-of-pocket limit: This is the maximum amount you will pay out-of-pocket before your plan covers 100 percent of your healthcare costs.
Thinking of these costs on a year-round basis can help you to select the right coverage for you.
Most Mississippi residents qualify for Medicare based on age. When you turn 65, you qualify for Medicare. If you’ve worked and paid Medicare taxes for 10 years or more, you will receive premium-free Part A Medicare. However, you likely will pay the standard Part B premium, which was $164.90 in 2023.
If you are receiving Social Security benefits before age 65, you will be automatically enrolled in Parts A and B of Medicare and have the option to switch to Medicare Advantage. However, if you are not, you can sign up for Medicare the three months before, the month of, and three months after your 65th birthday. This is your Initial Enrollment Period. You can enroll at your local Social Security office, online or over the phone with the Social Security Administration.
Other enrollment periods exist once you’re eligible for Medicare. These include:
- Medicare Open Enrollment Period: This is the time period from October 15 to December 7 each year, also known as the Annual Enrollment Period. If you’re enrolled in Medicare entering this period, you can switch to a Medicare Advantage plan if you wish.
- Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period: This is the time period from January 1 through March 31. During this time, you can change your Medicare Advantage plan or go back to Original Medicare. You cannot, however, switch from Original Medicare to Medicare Advantage.
- 5-Star Enrollment Period: This is the time period from December 8 to November 30, where you can enroll in a 5-star Medicare Advantage plan if you’re in a lower-rated Medicare Advantage plan.
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Yes, there are Medicare Advantage plans in Mississippi that incorporate Part D plans. Through these plans, you can choose one company to provide all your Medicare benefits. Some $0 premium Medicare Advantage plans offer prescription drug coverage.
New for 2023 Part D plans is the availability of the Senior Savings Model — a cost-savings plan for those with diabetes who are insulin-dependent. If you choose a Medicare Advantage plan that participates in the Senior Savings Model, you will pay no more than $35 a month for your insulin. Fifteen Medicare Advantage plans in Mississippi participated in the Senior Savings Model in 2022.
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