A House Republican wants to give Medicare Advantage buyers a little more enrollment flexibility early in the plan year.
Rep. Keith Rothfus, R-Pa., has proposed H.R. 2453, a bill that would let enrollees switch Medicare plans once between January and March.
Program managers use a fall open enrollment period system to push consumers to sign up for Medicare Advantage coverage every year and to pay for the coverage year round, rather than simply waiting until they get sick to pay for coverage.
In the past, the program offered a plan switching period as well as the open enrollment period.
H.R. 2453 would restore a plan switch period that was eliminated by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) in 2010, Rothfus said.
Rothfus promoted the bill today at a House Energy & Commerce health subcommittee hearing on Medicare.
Supporters and opponents of Obama administration Medicare proposals appeared at the hearing to talk about why they think the proposals would improve the program or hurt the enrollees by increasing the cost of Medicare plans and reducing the number available.
Lawmakers also considered several Medicare bills.