Open enrollment began Saturday and runs through
"Even if you are happy with your current coverage, we encourage
Plan costs and covered benefits can change yearly.
Seven of the
The cheapest plans may look tempting to cost-conscious shoppers, said
But, she cautioned, those plans can end up costing some people much more than pricier plans when they figure in deductibles, out-of-pocket caps, prescription costs and whether their doctor is included in the network.
"A plan that fits your friend, your neighbor or even yourself this year might not fit next," she said. "This can be complicated stuff."
New this year: ratings
Something new this year for area
Only 14 out of 364
The rating is based on 44 quality and performance measures, including whether a plan detects, prevents and improves the health of members, how it handles member appeals and customer satisfaction.
"We're so proud as an organization. You can't believe how many people were involved to make this happen," said
For consumers, the 5-star provides a unique option: If you sign up for a different
Chuchanis said she can't remember another 5-star plan in the
When shopping, consumers should pay attention to a plan's star rating -- particularly if it has less than three stars -- but be aware that the star rating is only one of several considerations to weigh.
Chuchanis said many shoppers want to hang on to the doctors who care for them.
The only way to know whether a doctor is covered by a plan you choose -- even if you're sticking with the same plan as you have this year -- is to call the doctor's office and ask, she said.
During open enrollment,
If you suspect someone is using your
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