As part of Washington state's Office of Insurance Commissioner's consumer protection services, the Statewide Health Insurance Benefits Advisors Helpline helps more than 2,500 people annually in Clark and Skamania counties. It is a free and impartial, unbiased resource. We are here to help people make informed and educated choices about their Medicare health plans.
This year open enrollment is from Oct. 15 to Dec. 7. It has been well advertised by Medicare as well as the office of the insurance commissioner and various insurance companies online, in print on TV and radio. Yet in spite of all this, every year after Dec. 7 there are always those who come in, knowing they have missed the deadline, hoping we can fix it.
An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. If you want to, or have to, make changes to your Medicare insurance you must act during open enrollment. If you are happy with the plan you have, do nothing.
SHIBA is here to help. We conduct individual counseling at six sites in Skamania and Clark counties. Our local number is 360-735-3686. At that number, leave a message and a volunteer will get back to you within 24 to 48 hours.