In 2024, the average monthly premium for Medicare Advantage (MA) plans is expected to rise by 64 cents. About 73% of MA beneficiaries are not expected to see any increases in the monthly premiums for their current plan next year, according to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).
Currently, the average premium for Medicare Advantage, which serves as a private insurance substitute to the original Medicare, stands at $17.86 per month. This is anticipated to reach $18.50 by 2024. It’s essential to note that the exact monthly fee beneficiaries will be charged will differ based on their chosen plan and their residential location.
The CMS anticipates a surge in the enrollment for Advantage plans. The numbers are expected to rise from 31.6 million in the current year to approximately 33.8 million in 2024. This would account for nearly half of all Medicare beneficiaries.
These premium forecasts for MA plans, often called Part C, are unveiled ahead of the Medicare open enrollment phase, which kicks off on October 15. Enrollees, numbering close to 66 million, will have until December 7 to assess their coverage and implement any modifications, which will become effective from January 2024.
Updates on Part A, B, and D Premiums
Earlier, the CMS disclosed that the average monthly premium for Medicare Part D, which pertains to prescription drug coverage, is set to decrease by roughly 1.8% in 2024. This means a drop from the current $56.49 to $55.50 next year. The precise premiums for these plans will also fluctuate based on the beneficiary’s location and chosen plan. It’s worth mentioning that most MA plans incorporate prescription drug coverage.
As for the 2024 premiums and deductibles concerning Medicare Part A (covering hospital care) and Part B (covering doctor appointments and other outpatient services), the CMS has yet to finalize the figures.
A significant portion of Medicare beneficiaries are exempt from the Part A premium since they’ve already contributed sufficiently in Medicare taxes during their employment years. All Medicare participants are obligated to pay Part B premiums. For those who’ve initiated their retirement benefits, these premiums are directly subtracted from their Social Security benefits. Furthermore, MA members are responsible for any premiums their chosen plan imposes. Simultaneously, those with original Medicare who opt for supplemental (or Medigap) coverage will need to pay a premium for these additional policies.
Open in enrollment
Open enrollment is a pivotal time for Medicare enrollees; the open enrollment period begins October 15 and runs through December 7. This period allows you to change your plan. If you need to make changes to your Medicare coverage, the government provides some useful services that you can use. You can enroll in some plans online at www.medicare.gov or call 1-800-MEDICARE to make changes by phone.
Before enrolling in a Medicare plan, confirming that your doctors are Part of the plan’s provider network is important. You can do this by contacting them directly. If you need assistance reviewing your options or making changes, you can contact your State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) for impartial and reliable Medicare counseling. The government funds SHIPs to provide this service. To contact your nearest SHIP, simply call 877-839-2675.
Open enrollment is a pivotal time for Medicare enrollees, and maximizing its benefits could lead to substantial healthcare savings in 2024. It’s crucial to use this time wisely to make informed decisions about Medicare coverage.