Practical tips from a pro: Where to find Medicare resources

We’re in a digital age! Get a few insider tips and tricks about how to shop for the right Medicare plan, all on your computer.

We’re living in the digitally connected 21-century! There is more information about Medicare online than ever before. So where do you start? How do you weed through it all when you’re researching and shopping for a plan?

Plan finders

I talk to members all the time who want to know the best online tools to search for and sign up for a Medicare plan. Right away, I tell them to check out Medicare Plan Finder on medicare.gov.

The Medicare Plan Finder allows you to really compare the health plan options. It’s a good place to start your research. Unlike the private plan sites, this one looks at everything across all plans. You’ll be able see and compare how plans stack up against each other.

Once you find a plan that suits your needs, or maybe you want to learn more about your best friend’s plan, use the private health plan sites to get more details. Dig deeper to check benefit levels—a benefit level is the maximum amount a health insurance company agrees to pay for a specific covered benefit. And learn more about plan offerings and any extras that may be included such as fitness benefits or discounts.

Doctor searches

If it’s important to you to keep your favorite doctors, visit Physician Compare on medicare.gov to find your provider. And when it comes to private plans, you’ll want to see what doctors are covered by the insurance plans you’re interested in. Providers who accept Medicare may be listed as “Medicare certified” or “accepting Medicare assignment.”

Be safe and secure

Take the same online precautions you would when you’re shopping for anything else online. Never sign anything or give out your personal information unless you’re sure you’re on a secure web site.

Doing your research has never been easier—you can learn a lot online about your Medicare options. What’s most important is that you know what you’re shopping and signing up for and that you get the plan that best fits your wants and needs.