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CMS Launches eMedicare Initiative to Expand Online Resources

October 02, 2018

The U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has launched a new resource to offer Medicare beneficiaries and their families easier access to more information about their plan and coverage. eMedicare is a multi-year initiative intended to provide new online entry points to its suite of Medicare resources.

Citing an increasing demand for online resources, eMedicare will offer a variety of online tools and self-service options, including:

  • Mobile-friendly services and applications
  • A tool to compare traditional Medicare with Medicare Advantage
  • An online cost calculator
  • Interactive resources, including a web chat feature and online surveys

In her announcement, CMS Administrator Seema Verma said that eMedicare is intended to leverage the increasing use of mobile devices to access information, enhance customer service options, and give consumers more control of their Medicare plan information.

In addition, CMS made updates to its online services, and now will provide consumers with access to printable Medicare cards, enhanced website and online communications, and electronic versions of Medicare resources.

New features will be introduced during this year’s Medicare open enrollment, also known as the annual election period, which will take place October 15 through December 7. This is the time when a beneficiary can change plans, switch from Medicare Advantage back to original Medicare, or vice versa. He or she also can change, join, or drop Medicare Part D coverage during this period. Information about plan coverage and costs can be found at CMS’ Medicare website.

Medicare is the federal health insurance program for individuals aged 65 and older, those with disabilities, and those with End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD), which is permanent kidney failure requiring dialysis or a transplant. CMS estimates that Medicare covers more than 2.6 million Pennsylvanians.

For more information, contact Jolene Calla, Esq., HAP’s vice president, health care finance and insurance.

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