WPS Health Insurance

WPS Health Insurance, Wisconsin's Largest Not-for-Profit Medicare Part D Provider, Reminds Seniors That Medicare's Annual Enrollment Period (AEP) Begins and Ends Earlier This Year

With earlier AEP start dates, people on Medicare must pay particular attention this year so they don't miss their opportunity to change plans.

MADISON, Wisconsin
August 31, 2011

WPS Health Insurance, Wisconsin's leading not-for-profit health insurer and provider of Medicare Part D plans and Medicare supplement plans, reminds Medicare beneficiaries that Medicare's Annual Enrollment Period (AEP) begins October 15 and ends December 7 this year, a full month earlier than in prior years.

"Medicare's AEP is when seniors may enroll or change Medicare prescription drug plans and Medicare Advantage (MA) plans, or return to Original Medicare. This fall, Medicare's AEP will begin October 15 and end December 7, almost a full month earlier than previous years. This is an important change, as many seniors have become accustomed to the November 15 to December 31 dates of prior AEPs."

— Tom Olson, Senior V.P. of Sales and Marketing, WPS Health Insurance

The shift in dates is the result of recent health care reform through the Affordable Care Act of 2010. "It is critical for seniors who are currently enrolled in a plan to make their enrollment selections during this new AEP if they wish to change their coverage for 2012," said Olson.

As a result of the change to AEP dates, seniors enrolled in MA plans, MA-PDs (Medicare Advantage plans that provide coverage for prescription drugs), and PDPs should receive their Annual Notice of Change (ANOC) and Evidence of Coverage (EOC) documents for contract year 2012 by September 30, 2011. WPS encourages seniors to read their ANOCs carefully to make sure their current plans will meet their health and budget requirements in 2012.

"Medicare drug plans change every year: the benefits can change, costs can change, entire plans can be terminated and there can be real consequences for seniors who don't make adjustments during the AEP. By reviewing their Annual Notice of Change documents and comparison-shopping with other plans, Wisconsin seniors can make better, more informed and cost-effective choices."

Forty-five years of experience serving seniors on Medicare.

WPS has served seniors on Medicare since the program began in 1966. Today, the company's Medicare supplement plan, the WPS Medicare Companion, is the #1 choice of Wisconsin seniors, outselling all other supplements in the state.1 In addition, more than 25,000 seniors have enrolled in the company's Medicare Part D plans–making WPS the largest not-for-profit Part D plan provider in Wisconsin2.

WPS encourages seniors who have Medicare-specific questions to visit the
Official US Government Medicare website or call 1 800 MEDICARE (800-633-4227).

About WPS Health Insurance
Founded in 1946, WPS is Wisconsin's leading not-for-profit health insurer, offering affordable individual health insurance, family health insurance, high-deductible health plans, and short-term health insurance, as well as flexible and affordable group plans and cost-effective benefit plan administration for businesses. In addition, the WPS Medicare division administers Part A and B benefits for millions of seniors in multiple states, and the WPS TRICARE division serves millions more members of the U.S. military and their families. In 2010 and 2011, WPS was recognized by the international Ethisphere® Institute as one of the World's Most Ethical Companies, and is the only health insurance company to earn this distinction. For more information about WPS Health Insurance, visit http://www.wpsic.com.

1 Based on sales data submitted by insurers to the Wisconsin Office of the Commissioner of Insurance, 2010.
2 CMS enrollment data, 5/2011.