Medicare Advantage roll-out is heading off the cliff.


The deadline for deciding what our retiree health care will look like – whether we go with Medicare Advantage or opt out – is December 13th.

Central Management Services is co-sponsoring informational seminars across the state between November 11th and December 11th.

The one for retirees who live in Chicago is at the Thompson Center on December 6th.

That gives me seven days to figure out what I will do. And if I opt out I can’t get back in. And all the money I paid into the plan over thirty years is gone.

For good.

Seven days.

If you live in Belleville the seminar is at Southwest Community College on December 11th.

That will allow you one day to decide.

One day.

If you live in the north suburbs of Chicago you can attend a seminar on the far north side. Or Palatine.

That’s it. It is an area in which thousands of Illinois teacher retirees live.

More seminars are being held downstate. But teachers tell me that in some cases they will have to drive more than two hours each way to attend one.

CMS is willing to set up additional seminars if we pay for them.

Over $300 bucks a pop.

And we find the space.

Posted in CMS

8 thoughts on “Medicare Advantage roll-out is heading off the cliff.

  1. Fred,
    Also keep in mind that the final date for open enrollment in the Federal Medicare Program is December 7th, that date did not change just because CMS moved their date back a week to December 13th. What is the point of having some of these “seminars” so late, some after the December 7th federal deadline? I guess the only reason to attend one of these seminars after the December 7th date would be if one has already decided to stay with the state of Illinois and is just either trying to decide between an HMO or PPO or trying to get more information about the state plan they have chosen. Also remember that these private insurance companies are extremely busy right now because everyone in the private sector is also changing plans and re-evaluating their coverage during the federal open enrollment period, so if you are considering opting out and going privately, I wouldn’t let that go til the last minute.

  2. That’s crap that we would have to pay to attend. Not our fault that they can’t get their crap together until the end. It should be extended, they tell us not to make quick judgments yet that is what they are forcing us to do. Hope they list the counties that are covered. I haven’t seen anything with Christian yet, but since the Clinic is under Springfield Clinic guess that works for Sangamon. I just don’t think this has been thought out and we shouldn’t be forced to decided in a day.

  3. I live within 40-70 minutes of a meeting and so it is not a big problem for me, but I just hope we can get the answers we need to make the best decisions when we get there!

  4. Gee, I’m sure we’d all love to contribute money to fund another meeting for CMS but drat, our current compounded COLA may be a thing of the past once the legislature gets through with its idea of “reform” so there goes that idea!!

  5. Be sure to videotape all answers you get at any of these meetings.
    We want CMS to have their “Don’t do this to me” moment.
    Actually, the CMS staff have been as helpful as the circumstances allow.
    Each CMS meeting should have a legislator in attendance.

  6. Just curious- money that you contribute toward Federal Medicare is yours, isn’t it? What do you mean youi’d lose it, are you talking about a supplement decision? that’s a lousy time frame and you shouldn’t have to pay for ANY semninars.

    1. The money we paid into TRIP (Teacher Retirement Insurance Program). It is funded mainly by active and retired teachers, plus lesser amounts from the state and home district.

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