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Poll Reveals Changes to Seniors' Lives Since the Pandemic

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(NewsUSA) - The Medicare Advantage and Prescription Drug Plan annual enrollment period (October 15 -- December 7) is open. If you're eligible for Medicare, now is the time to think about how your life and health may have changed over the past year and whether switching your Medicare plan, including considering an "all-in-one" Medicare Advantage plan, will provide you with the coverage and support that you will need next year.

According to a new national poll from Humana, four-in-five people aged 64+ say that their lives have changed since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. These changes may shape how you choose a health plan, so be sure to be informed on the options to ensure you select the best one for you.

  • Physical Activity is Down. The poll reveals that 41% of seniors are getting less physical activity since the beginning of the pandemic. For many seniors, it's important to keep up with regular physical activity, whether that includes taking regular walks, joining a fitness class or going to the gym. Many Medicare Advantage plans even offer gym memberships, so check to see if that is an option in any of the plans you're considering. Seniors should talk with their doctor before starting a new exercise routine.
  • Seniors' Loneliness is Up. More than 60% of seniors say that the amount of time they spend with friends and family has decreased, and one-in-five admit to feeling sad more often than they did prior to the pandemic. Be sure to look into mental health benefits as part of your research.
  • Technology May be Key to Good Health. Despite preconceived notions that seniors tend to shy away from technology, such as telehealth and video meeting tools, the Humana poll reveals the opposite: more than four-in-five (84%) seniors used technology to manage their health and wellness during the pandemic. Telehealth may be a great option for seniors, especially those who travel, and some plans offer $0 co-pays for many telehealth services.
  • Time to Review is Important. Nearly half of seniors plan to pay closer attention to what is -- and is not -- covered by 2022 health plans than in previous years. So be sure to research which doctors and hospitals are in-network, as well as whether vision, hearing and dental benefits are included.

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, be sure to educate yourself about plan options safely by using digital resources, including virtual educational or sales events and one-on-one virtual meetings with licensed sales agents. Beneficiaries can also visit www.Medicare.gov; call 1-800-MEDICARE (800-633-4227), 24 hours a day, 7 days a week; or go to www.Humana.com/Medicare to learn more about Humana plans. Licensed Humana sales agents are available 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. local time, seven days a week at 1-800-213-5286 (TTY: 711). With these resources, you'll be able to more confidently select a 2022 Medicare Advantage plan that suits your specific health care needs.

Limitations on telehealth services, also referred to as virtual visits or telemedicine, vary by state. These services are not a substitute for emergency care and are not intended to replace your primary care provider or other providers in your network. Any descriptions of when to use telehealth services are for informational purposes only and should not be construed as medical advice. Please refer to your evidence of coverage for additional details on what your plan may cover or other rules that may apply. 

Humana is a Medicare Advantage HMO, HMO SNP, PPO, PPO SNP and PFFS organization with a Medicare contract. Enrollment in any Humana plan depends on contract renewal.