Elderly Couple
November 7, 2018 | by The Polyclinic

Medicare Annual Enrollment Period ends on December 7. Have you evaluated your Medicare options? Now is the time to assess your health needs and make sure you are enrolled in a plan that’s right for you.

Medicare Advantage plans at The Polyclinic

The Polyclinic accepts a number of Medicare Advantage plans with benefits like dental, hearing, vision, and out-of-country coverage. Many plans offer prescription drug coverage, as well as fitness programs or other health and wellness benefits not included in Original Medicare.

One consideration when selecting a Medicare Advantage plan is whether to go with a Health Maintenance Organization (HMO) or PPO Preferred Provider Organization (PPO). What’s the difference?

HMO plans focus on coordinated, in-network care

HMO plans are set up to provide patients access to a specific network of providers, often at multiple health care systems and typically at a lower cost than other plans. If you have an HMO plan, you may have lower premiums and co-pays for services, but you are required to stay within the network to receive coverage. You also may be required to designate a Primary Care Provider, or PCP, to help manage your health care. Your designated PCP will coordinate all of your health care services and refer you to in-network specialists and other providers when necessary.

If you are a Polyclinic primary care patient, working closely with a PCP to manage your care will feel familiar. Our primary care physicians work hand-in-hand with our specialists to provide you with coordinated, high-quality care.

PPO plans focus on flexibility

PPO plans are designed to provide patients with more choices for selecting health care providers, but typically come at a higher cost. Unlike an HMO, you may have more flexibility to receive care from a provider without a referral. In exchange for that flexibility, if you see a non-network doctor, you typically pay a larger portion of the cost of care. Out-of-pocket costs also may be higher than those in an HMO plan.

Different plans for different needs

Each year, Medicare plans change, and so do your health needs. It’s important to regularly review coverage, costs, and benefits. No matter which plan you choose, be sure to determine if your providers will be in-network.

Looking for more information?

We are pleased to offer a variety of Medicare resources to help you find the right plan. If you are interested in learning more about Medicare Advantage be sure to attend out free event “Understanding Medicare Advantage” on Saturday, December 1st. Representatives from our accepted Medicare Advantage plans and Connexion Insurance will answer questions, share plan materials, and help you enroll. There are two sessions offered at the Hampton Inn & Suites (next to The Polyclinic Northgate Plaza) from 9 am – noon and 2 – 5 pm. The event is free for attendees, but registration in advance is encouraged.

For questions about the Medicare event, contact the Polyclinic Medicare Advocate at 206-860-4718 or medicareadvocate@polyclinic.com.

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