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Medicare open enrollment is open Oct. 15-Dec. 7, giving seniors a chance to enroll in or make changes to their current Medicare plans.

Question: I’m receiving junk mail and spam calls about upcoming Medicare Open Enrollment. I’m confused. What can I do to sort out these claims and actually get the help I need to see what would work best for me and my situation?

Answer: Medicare Open Enrollment dates for 2019 are Oct. 15 to Dec. 7. During the annual enrollment period, you can make changes to various aspects of your coverage. For example, you can switch from Original Medicare to Medicare Advantage, or vice versa. You can also switch from one Medicare Advantage plan to another, or from one Medicare Part D (prescription drug) plan to another.

You can also discuss MediGap plans with an agent. These plans supplement original Medicare and are different from the Advantage plans altogether.

Medicare education meetings at the Aspen Mine Center, 166 E. Bennett Ave., Cripple Creek are scheduled for Wednesdays Oct. 30, Nov. 13 and Dec. 4 at 11 a.m. Devani Unbewust, agent with Seniors Choice Benefits, LLC, will discuss changes to the 2020 benefits. Some plans may no longer work with the UC Health Pikes Peak Regional Hospital in Woodland Park (this excludes emergency room services). Some plans are specifically for those dual eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid and can include vision, dental and some transportation. Seniors are encouraged to attend one of these educational presentations that aims to make a complex program more understandable for clients. Call Unbewust at 719-352-9268 or myself at 719-689-3584 for more information.

You can also contact the State Health Insurance Program (SHIP) counselors in Colorado Springs through the Pikes Peak Area Agency on Aging at 719-471-2096, as they offer one on one counseling on Medicare benefits as well. They are located at 14 South Chestnut St. in Colorado Springs.

Rebecca Blair is a Senior Advocate at the Community of Caring Foundation Aspen Mine Center. Contact her with questions on senior living in Teller County at rebecca@aspenminecenter.org or 689-3584, ext. 101.

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