LATEST PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENTS
Three Ways to Protect Yourself During Medicare and Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment
During Medicare annual open enrollment (Oct. 15, 2023 – Dec. 7, 2023) and Medicare Advantage open enrollment (Jan. 1, 2024 – March 31, 2024), you can expect to see plenty of advertisements promising the "latest and greatest" ways to save on your health plans and expenses if you'll just "call right now!"
While some choices may look promising, some offers really are "too good to be true."
The following three tips will help you navigate Medicare annual open enrollment and Medicare Advantage open enrollment, find a plan that works best for you, and spot misleading or fraudulent marketing.
1. Don't give into pressure
There's no such thing as a "limited-time offer" or "special discount if you sign up right away" when it comes to these plans.
You don't have to make a decision after a single phone call or website visit. Take your time.
Don't hesitate to ask anyone calling you for their full name and contact information, company license information, or a copy of the plan.
NOTE: Medicare and Social Security will never contact you by phone to offer a health plan.
You don't need to provide your Social Security number, bank account, Medicare number, or credit card before you can see plan details or receive a quote for legitimate plans.
2. Do your research before you commit
Read Medicare.gov's breakdown to learn more about what each part of Medicare covers and the difference between Medicare, Medicare Supplement insurance (Medigap), Medicare Advantage, and Medicaid.
Check with your state department of insurance (DOI) to ask any questions or ensure an agent or company is licensed to provide plans in your state.
You can also contact your State Health Insurance Assistance Program for help navigating your Medicare options. In some states, these are known as a SHIP program, but they may have a different name in other states.
Keep in mind that not all the benefits you hear about on TV or see on the internet may be offered by every plan or even be available in your local area.
Familiarize yourself with the rules those representing a Medicare health plan have to follow.
Read the fine print of Medicare Advantage plans. When you hear something is "free" or "zero premium," you need to exercise caution. While some plans may have "zero co-pays," those could be limited to your primary care provider. If you see a lot of specialists, you may pay more out of pocket.
3. Follow basic cybersecurity practices online
Beware of clicking on random internet ads or pop-ups.
Know that some websites will change their colors or layout to look like a government site but aren't actually affiliated with the government.
Use caution and avoid responding to unsolicited messages, texts, or emails.
You can learn more about best practices here.
Contact us at 307-777-7402 if you need assistance or believe you have been misled.
Covid Vaccine Coverage
The Wyoming Department of Insurance (DOI) is reminding companies of their obligation to provide coverage of COVID-19 vaccines including the recently updated mRNA COVID-19 VACCINE recommended by Advisory Committee on Immunizations Practices (ACIP) on September 12, 2023. Pursuant to Sections 3202 and 3203 of the CARES Act, vaccines received from a network provider must be covered without cost-sharing within 15 business days after the date on which an application recommendation is made by U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) with an effective rating of “A” or “B”B or ACIP regarding the qualifying coronavirus preventive service.
Wyoming DOI urges issuers to act as quickly as possible and take the necessary measures to streamline any claim system, billing, coding or overall coverage issues prior to the 15 days, but no later than October 9, 2023.
Wyoming DOI is steadfast in their mission of ensuring all insureds receive the benefits of the insurance they pay for, this includes access to vaccines that could reduce the potential for hospitalizations and death.
Questions regarding this memorandum may be directed to Jill Reinking, Senior Health Policy Analyst, 307-777-7401, email@example.com.
Annuity Best Interest Training Guidance
On July 5, 2023, the Department’s revised Ch. 64: Regulation Governing Suitability in Annuity Transactions will take effect. The revisions to Chapter 64 implement new training requirements for producers that sell, solicit, or negotiate annuities in Wyoming. The new training requirements are:
All producers must complete a 4 credit hour course on the appropriate sales practices, replacement and disclosure requirements under the amended regulation before selling, soliciting, or negotiating annuity insurance policies.
Producers that completed 4 credit hours of annuity suitability training between March 26, 2014 and July 5, 2023 need only take a 1 credit hour course on the appropriate sales practices, replacement and disclosure requirements under the amended regulation before selling, soliciting, or negotiating annuity insurance policies.
Producers that have completed the required annuity best interest training prior to July 5, 2023 will be in compliance.
All training requirements must be completed prior to January 5, 2024.
Continuing education providers filing courses that comply with the revised requirements of Chapter 64 should use the “Annuity” category when applying for course approval. These course titles should indicate that the course complies with the NAIC annuity best interest standards, and indicate the credit hours approved. For example, “Annuity Best Interest - 4 hours”. Any 1 hour courses filed will be inactivated on January 5, 2024.
Compliance with these regulations shall be verified by both the producer selling annuity products and the insurer represented by the producer.
If you have any further questions please contact the licensing section at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The mission of this agency is to enforce the insurance laws and regulations of the State impartially, honestly, and expeditiously; to serve the consumer of insurance; to encourage a healthy insurance marketplace; and to promote change to better serve the public interest. To this end, the highest ethical, professional, and work quality standards will be exercised in all formal and informal relationships with individuals, agencies, and companies affected by the policies and actions of the department. It is our commitment to be the best insurance regulatory agency in the United States.