Medicare Initial Enrollment: Where to go for answers


October 24, 2022

Medicare Initial EnrollmentAre you approaching age 65 and have questions about the Medicare Initial Enrollment period? Making Medicare decisions for yourself or a loved one can seem daunting. Now with AARP’s Medicare EnrollmentSM Guide you can get unbiased guidance.

You can explore the guide on your own and learn about what Medicare covers, how much it costs, and whether original Medicare or Medicare Advantage is right for you. Or you can answer a few quick questions that will help you:

  • Determine your best time to sign up.
  • Learn how Medicare works with your other health coverage.
  • Decide between original Medicare and Medicare Advantage.

The interactive guide includes six sections: 

  1. Medicare Essentials – Terms, common questions, deadlines.
    • 5 Facts About Medicare
    • Get Smart About the Enrollment Process
    • Top 10 Questions About Medicare 
    • 10 Medicare Mistakes and How to Avoid Them
    • 8 Surprising Things Medicare Doesn’t Cover  
  2. The Parts of Medicare – Key differences between the four parts and Medigap.
    • Part A: Hospital Coverage
    • Part B: Doctor and Outpatient Services
    • Part C: Medicare Advantage
    • Part D: Prescription Drugs
    • Medicare Supplement Insurance, aka Medigap
  3. Costs and Coverage – Expenses to expect, possible financial aid, and what kind of coverage you’ll receive.
    • Comparing Your Medicare Options
    • 5 Questions to Consider When Choosing Coverage
    • How to Estimate your Costs
    • Making Medicare Work For You
  4. What’s the Right Plan for Me? – Make three decisions to create your own Medicare Enrollment Guide and get the coverage you need.
    • Review of the Learning Checklist and a link to create a personal guide
  5. Ready to Enroll – This library of articles will help you determine when and how to sign up for Medicare as well as how to get financial assistance.
    • 5 Steps to Enrolling in Medicare
    • If You Receive Social Security Benefits Now
    • How to Sign Up During Your Initial Enrollment Period
    • How to Sign Up During a Special Enrollment Period
    • How to Sign Up During the General Enrollment Period
    • How to Get Help Paying for Medicare
    • How to Enroll in a Medicare Advantage Plan
    • How to Enroll in a Part D Plan
    • How to Buy a Medigap Policy
    • How to Get Help Enrolling in Medicare 
  6. What’s Next – ?After you sign up for Medicare, you can take steps such as scheduling a “Welcome to Medicare” visit with your doctor and creating an online account.?
    • Schedule a Welcome to Medicare visit
    • Create an online Medicare account
    • Sign up a proxy if you wish
    • Alert your health care providers
    • Consider going paperless
    • Study your coverage
    • Anticipate potential needs
    • Seek financial help if necessary
    • Keep track of what you like
    • Learn more


We hope this information is helpful to you in the important work you do as a family caregiver.
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