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Enrolling in a Medicare Advantage plan from the comfort of home

Color portrait of Sachi Fujimori By Sachi Fujimori

In this digital age, more and more consumers are using online tools to file their taxes, order groceries and connect with loved ones. And signing up for a Medicare Advantage (MA) plan is no exception. If you’re interested in signing up for an MA plan or switching plans, various tools and resources are available. These aids can help you enroll in a plan from the comfort of your home. 

What’s more, as you navigate the process, you don’t have to go through it alone. Aetna representatives and licensed brokers are available by phone. They’re ready to give you personalized support every step of the way.

Read on to learn about your remote MA enrollment options and the key information that you need to sign up. 

By phone

We encourage you to reach out to an Aetna representative or licensed broker by phone. They can provide personalized, one-on-one support to help guide you through the enrollment process. Maybe you’re new to Medicare and need help understanding some of the complicated terms. Or you’ve already done research on your own and have some questions. Either way, these experts are available to meet you where you are. “Our goal is to make sure you have all the information you need to make an informed decision about your health coverage,” says Annette Grosz-Ringdahl, senior director, Aetna Medicare Telesales Operations.

“Our goal is to make sure you have all the information you need to make an informed decision about your health coverage.”

Enrolling by phone also means that you can do it at a time that is most convenient for you. During the Annual Election Period, Aetna representatives are available seven days a week, 8 AM to 8 PM.

When you call Aetna or a licensed broker, you’ll be connected with an expert who is knowledgeable about the specific plan options available in your area. And since MA plans are not one-size-fits-all, they’ll ask you some questions related to your health care, lifestyle and budget. This helps ensure you get the plan for your needs.

If you’re not ready to make a decision during the call, you’ll never be pressured to sign up. You can request to have additional information sent to you by email or mail. You can also schedule a time to have an Aetna representative call you back another day. 

When you are ready to enroll, the Aetna representative or licensed broker can complete the enrollment for you while you stay on the phone. The process usually takes about 20 minutes. You’ll need some information handy, such as your Original Medicare number and Parts A and B effective dates (see below for more on what you need handy to enroll). 

For those who have an ongoing relationship with a licensed broker, enrolling by phone is a good alternative when meeting in person is not possible. “If there’s any sort of questions prior to enrollment taking place, the broker is available. And after signing up, brokers can provide continuous support if you have any claims issues or insurance questions,” says Leslie Hall, manager, sales support at Aetna. 

Online 

If you’re someone who prefers to sign up by yourself, this can be the most convenient option. To get started, Aetna has a tool that can recommend plans that fit your needs. Once you’ve selected a plan, you have the option to complete the enrollment application online. If you have any questions during the process, you can always reach out to an Aetna representative online or by phone.

And if you’ve been working with a broker, you can also complete your enrollment online. Ask your broker to email you a digital enrollment kit, which includes all the materials you need to sign up. This option allows you to review the documents on your own time and then submit your enrollment electronically. 

Medicare beneficiaries can also enroll in an Aetna MA plan through the CMS Medicare Online Enrollment Center at  www.medicare.gov.

By mail or fax

If you prefer to complete a paper enrollment form, call us to have an Aetna MA enrollment kit sent to you. And if you haven’t already chosen your plan, an Aetna representative can walk you through your options. They can then send the enrollment forms to you by mail. 

You can reach us at 855-335-1407, Monday through Friday, 8 AM to 8 PM. 

What you need to sign up

If you’re still shopping for a plan, this information can help you compare your options:

  • List of drugs you’re taking and the dosage(s)
  • Correct spelling of your doctors’ names and locations
  • If you have an existing plan, some basic info: out-of-pocket maximum, premium cost
  • What you like most about the plan you currently have

Then, when you’re ready to sign up, you’ll need to provide this information:

  • Medicare number 
  • Parts A and B effective dates (written on the front of your Medicare card)
  • How you plan to pay for your monthly plan premium. Your options include:  
    • Making a one-time payment or setting up automatic monthly payments from your bank account. Have your checkbook handy to be able to give your routing and account numbers.
    • Direct bill pay. Some members may receive a coupon book. You can send back a coupon slip with a check each month. You won’t get a bill by mail. 
    • Deduction from your Social Security Administration or Railroad Retirement Board check.
    • Paying your premium directly at a CVS retail store. Bring your coupon book with the “pay at store” barcode and hand it to the cashier. You can pay by cash, credit card or debit card.

When it comes to enrolling in an MA plan, you have a variety of options for doing so from the convenience of your home. As you navigate the process, keep in mind that our  representatives are here to help you through every step of the process. “We’re really here to spend the time to get to know you and help you find the plan that best fits your needs,” says Grosz-Ringdahl. “And when you hang up the phone, you may even feel like you’ve personally met someone.”

About the author

Sachi Fujimori is a writer and editor based in Brooklyn who focuses on writing about science and health.  A good day is one where she eats her vegetables and remembers to live in the moment with her baby girl.