Medicare’s free guide details advice on plans and changes for 2023 (video)

CLEVELAND, Ohio — Choosing the right health insurance plan can be complicated. The process requires research and patience, but there are free resources ready to help.

That was the advice given by a panel of health insurance experts Thursday during The Plain Dealer and cleveland.com Guide to Medicare & Golden Retirement presented by Medical Mutual.

Watch a YouTube video of the event above or at this link. The moderator was Julie Washington, health care reporter at Plain Dealer and cleveland.com.

About 600 registrants signed up for the free virtual event, held during Medicare’s open enrollment period, which runs through Wednesday, Dec. 7.

Amanda McFarland, account manager for Northeast Ohio at Medical Mutual, top left, and panelist Christina Reeg, program director of the Ohio Senior Health Insurance Information Program (OSHIIP), top right , answer attendee questions during The Plain Dealer and cleveland.com Guide to Medicare & Golden Retirement presented by Medical Mutual. Plain Dealer and Cleveland.com health reporter Julie Washington, center, hosted the event Thursday.Julie E Washington, cleveland.com

During the enrollment period, people who already have Medicare can make changes to their plans. Penalties are provided for late registration.

A cap on the price of insulin, expensive vaccines that will be available for free, and lower premium costs are among the changes coming to Medicare next year.

People new to Medicare have a lot of research ahead of them, said panelist Christina Reeg, director of the Ohio Seniors Medicare Information Program, housed at the Department of Insurance. Ohio.

“It’s certainly not beyond the realm of understanding, but we appreciate those who are proactive in getting this information,” Reeg said. She kicked off the online session with an explanation of common Medicare terms.

Amanda McFarland, account manager for Northeast Ohio at Medical Mutual, and Reeg answered many questions from the virtual hearing, ranging from enrollment times and the pros and cons of Medicare Advantage plans, to independent Medicare agents and more.

McFarland pointed out that because each person’s medical situation is different, choosing a health insurance plan is a highly personalized decision.

“Just because your neighbor has an amazing plan doesn’t mean that amazing plan will meet your needs,” McFarland said. “It’s so important to look at the plans and see which one best fits your particular situation.”

Katie Goff, director of Medicare pharmacy and information services at Medical Mutual, answered questions about Medicare Part D, which covers prescription drugs.

Dr. Tere Koenig, Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer of Medical Mutual, provided advice on choosing the best health insurance plan for you and the factors to consider.