Medicare 2023 Open Enrollment

What is the Medicare Annual Election Period?

The Medicare Annual Election Period (AEP), also known as the Annual Enrollment Period, is an important time frame during which individuals who are eligible for Medicare can make changes to their Medicare coverage. The AEP typically occurs from October 15 to December 7 each year, with any changes taking effect on January 1 of the following year.

During the Medicare AEP, eligible individuals can take several actions:

  1. Enroll in Original Medicare (Part A and Part B): If you haven’t already enrolled in Original Medicare, you can do so during this period.
  2. Switch from Original Medicare to Medicare Advantage: You can enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan (Part C) if you have Original Medicare. Medicare Advantage plans are offered by private insurance companies and often include additional benefits such as prescription drug coverage.
  3. Switch from Medicare Advantage to Original Medicare: If you have a Medicare Advantage plan and wish to return to Original Medicare, you can do so during the AEP.
  4. Change or join a Medicare Part D prescription drug plan: If you have Original Medicare, you can sign up for a Part D plan during this period to help cover the costs of prescription medications. You can also switch from one Part D plan to another.
  5. Switch between different Medicare Advantage plans: If you’re already enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan, you can switch to a different one during the AEP.
  6. Make changes to your Medicare Advantage or Part D coverage: You can switch, drop, or add coverage options within your existing Medicare Advantage or Part D plan during this period.

It’s important to note that the AEP is the main opportunity for most Medicare beneficiaries to make changes to their coverage. However, there are some other enrollment periods throughout the year for specific circumstances, such as the Initial Enrollment Period (when you first become eligible for Medicare) and the Special Enrollment Periods (for those with certain qualifying events, like moving or losing employer coverage).

It’s a good idea to review your Medicare coverage annually during the AEP to ensure that your plan continues to meet your healthcare and prescription drug needs, as plans and costs can change from year to year. You can also consult with a Medicare counselor or insurance agent for assistance in making informed decisions about your Medicare coverage.

Pinnacle Insurance Services works with you to find the best Medicare coverage for you. We can answer all your Medicare questions at 816-477-0180 or email us at