Medicare Annual Enrollment Period (AEP)

Medicare’s Annual Enrollment Period (sometimes called the Medicare Annual Election Period) begins October 15 and ends December 7 of each year. During this time, Medicare allows you to make the following changes to your health care and prescription drug coverage:


  • Change to a Medicare Advantage Plan from Medicare Part A and Part B (often called ‘Original Medicare’).
  • Change from a Medicare Advantage (MA) Plan to Original Medicare.
  • Change from one MA plan to another (with or without Part D drug coverage).
  • Enroll in a Part D prescription drug plan.
  • Change from one Medicare prescription drug plan to another Medicare Prescription Drug Plan.
  • Opt out of Medicare prescription drug coverage completely.

The Medicare coverage and plan choices you make during AEP will take effect on January 1 of the upcoming year. For more information about changes you can make during AEP, and the rules that govern other important Medicare enrollment periods such as your Initial Enrollment Period (IEP), a Special Enrollment Period (SEP), call Medicare at 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227). TTY users call 711, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Return to the Medicare FAQ section to view more answers to other commonly asked questions about Medicare prescription drug coverage. Contact us if you'd like more information about when to enroll in a Medicare prescription drug plan.