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Important Dates

Medicare Advantage and Part D

If you want to enroll in a Medicare Advantage, Medicare Supplement, or Medicare Part D plan or change your coverage, we're here to help. There are certain times when you can enroll in or switch to a new Medicare Advantage or Medicare Part D plan, so please be aware of these important deadlines.

New to Medicare

Initial Election Period

If you are new to Medicare, you can join a Medicare Advantage or Medicare Part D prescription drug plan during the 7-month period that begins 3 months before the month you turn 65, includes the month you turn 65, and ends 3 months after the month you turn 65. If you get Medicare due to a disability, you can join during the 7-month period that begins 3 months before your 25th month of disability and ends 3 months after your 25th month of disability.

If you are eligible for Medicare prior to age 65 because of a disability, you may apply 3 months before the month of your eligibility for Medicare, the month of your eligibility, and 3 months after the month of eligibility.

October 15—December 7 each year

Annual Election Period

During this time, beneficiaries may enroll in a Medicare Advantage or Medicare Part D plan for the first time, change prescription drug plans, change Medicare Advantage plans, or return to Original Medicare . Enrollment elections made during this time frame take effect on January 1 of the following year.

January 1—February 14 each year

Medicare Advantage Disenrollment Period

If you are a Medicare Advantage member, this is the time when you can leave your plan and switch to Original Medicare. If you switch to Original Medicare during this period, you will have until February 14 to also join a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan to add drug coverage. Your coverage will begin the first day of the month after the plan gets your enrollment form.

Throughout the year

Special Election Period

People with special circumstances have an opportunity to make changes to their Medicare health or drug coverage, regardless of the general enrollment periods listed above. Examples of a special circumstance would be if you move out of your current plan's service area, or if you retire past the age of 65.

Varies

Medicare Supplement Plans

Open enrollment in Medicare supplement plans vary by plan. You can enroll in a Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Medex®' plan at any point during the year. You have, by law, at least 30 days to review a Medicare supplement policy. If you decide you don't want the coverage, you can get a full refund of any premiums you've paid during this "free look" period.