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Choosing your Medicare Advantage plan can be extremely difficult. There are many options and factors to consider when making sure you select the right plan for your needs. Every detail of each plan you review should be carefully analyzed, and you should always weigh the pros and cons of each. It is very easy to make mistakes when choosing a Medicare Advantage plan, and we are going to discuss key red flags to avoid, so you do not end up making these mistakes.

Firstly, make sure that you completely understand the difference between HMO and PPO plans. HMO plans generally tend to be lower in cost and also have lower doctor copayments than PPO. However, HMO is also more limited in terms of who you can see inside and outside their network. PPO can be more expensive but is more flexible in terms of doctor/hospital choice and out-of-network coverage. Next, do not choose a plan that does not have proper coverage for your prescriptions. Carefully examine the different coverage options within the Part D plan of Medicare Advantage to ensure that option covers what you need.

Avoid choosing a plan with a minimal number of doctors, even if that plan seems like the cheapest option. This can cause obvious issues, especially if you have specialty concerns about your health and might need to see out-of-network professionals. Also, do not be afraid to educate yourself on the right to switch your plan. Seniors often worry that multiple chronic health issues will hinder them from switching to other plans, which is not true. You can switch your plan each year during the Annual Election Period and Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period. 

Also, do not base your criteria for your choice of plan on what has worked for other people. Everyone’s plan is different and based on what suits their specific needs; you should cater yours to your individual situation as well. Lastly, do not forget that you can use your health insurance as much as you need to. Your coverage expands as your health issues do, but that does not always mean that the financial cost to you increases. The more your test and treat to stay healthy, the less you have to worry about super expensive hospital bills.