Medicare offers people over the age of 65 or people that are under 65 and disabled insurance protection. Currently, there are two parts of medicare insurance. One is the original plan, while the other is medicare advantage which is run by private insurance companies. Both have benefits to participating. If you should become sick it is important to know your options prior to making any permanent decisions.
Currently, if you are under the medicare advantage plan you now have the choice to switch back to the original plan. This change can be made between January 1, 2011 and Feburary 14, 2011. You will also need to decide on a prescription coverage plan as well prior to Februrary 14, 2011. This does not apply to those that are on the original plan and want to change to the advantage plan.
If you are sick or become sick then you still have the option of changing to a different private insurance company for the medicare advantage plan. Your illness can no longer be used against you in your choice of a carrier. The only exception is if you have Renal End Stage Disease.
Your insurance protection provides you hospital insurance, medical insurance, and prescription coverage. This is the part A, part B, and part D of your insurance package. If you need additional coverage you must get supplemental protection through a private insurance carrier which is approved by medicare. This is your medigap coverage. The advantage plans operates similar to a PPO or HMO plan that has members choose from participating doctors and providers for procedures and benefits. If the company chooses to opt out of offering insurance under medicare then the client will need to choose a new carrier.