With a Medicare Advantage plan there’s always the possibility of being dropped from your plan. These plans are subsidized by the government and the government is slowly taking away these subsidies causing them to be increasingly expensive for major insurers such as healthnet, SCAN, Blue Cross Blue Shield, United healthcare, Cigna, Aetna and many more. If a plan gets to be unprofitable, insurers have the right to drop the entire plan. This will cause thousands of individuals to receive letters by their providers stating that their major medical plans are ending and it is up to the member to find a new one.
Obviously this can be quite catastrophic requiring members to find new doctors, change their benefits and most likely restart their plan of care which can also mean having to pony up for copays all over again. Most Americans don’t know that while this letter is terrifying and a potentially crippling blow to their healthcare needs, there is one very important opportunity that the government allows with this letter.
If you or someone you know is being INVOLUNTARILY dropped from their medical plan and received a letter stating so, Medicare will allow you a new Guaranteed Issue window in order to purchase a Medicare Supplement with NO health questions! However, there is a catch.. it MUST be a supplement plan F. If you want a different supplement, you will have to medically qualify.
For someone with serious health issues that is spending a great deal with copays and co-insurance costs, this is an incredible opportunity which you might never get again.
Besides being dropped because of a plan getting discontinued, members can also be involuntarily dropped for moving out of their service areas also causing a Guaranteed Issue window. If someone is receiving Tri-Care benefits and re marries they will also be dropped. There are many ways that individuals can be forced out of their medical plans, contact your agent if you’re unsure about your rights & options.
Below is an example of what a drop letter would look like. This one is from 2014 from Aetna and to the right is from 2015 from Cigna. As you can see these are not small companies.