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Medicare Eligibility Requirements

You must live in one of the following Northeastern New York counties to be eligible for enrollment in one of Highmark Blue Shield's Medicare Advantage plans: 

  • Albany
  • Columbia
  • Fulton
  • Greene
  • Montgomery
  • Rensselaer
  • Saratoga
  • Schenectady
  • Warren 
  • Washington

Learn more about when to enroll

When can you join, drop, or switch a Medicare Advantage plan?

You may enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan only during specific times of the year: 

  • When you first become eligible for Medicare, the seven month period - beginning 3 months before you turn age 65, the month of your 65th birthday, and the 3 months following. 
  • If you get Medicare due to a disability.
  • During the Annual Election Period, October 15 - December 7. 

In most cases, you must stay enrolled for the calendar year that starts the date your coverage begins. 

You may be able to join, drop, or switch a Medicare Advantage plan in certain situations. Some of these circumstances include: 

  • The Medicare Open Enrollment period, between January 1 and March 31, which allows you to make a one-time change to your coverage. 
  • If you move out of the plan's service area.
  • If you have both Medicare and Medicaid.
  • If you qualify for extra help to pay for your prescription drugs.
  • If you live in an institution.

If you have any questions or need assistance, contact our Blue Concierge Service Team

Medicare Questions?

We're here to help.

1-833-735-4512 (TTY 711)
Oct. 1 - March 31, 8 a.m. - 8 p.m., 7 days a week
April 1 - Sept. 30, 8 a.m. - 8 p.m., Monday - Friday

Highmark Blue Shield of Northeastern New York (Highmark BSNENY) is a trade name of Highmark Western and Northeastern New York Inc., an independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. Highmark BSNENY is a Medicare Advantage plan with a Medicare contract and enrollment depends on contract renewal. Highmark BSNENY complies with applicable Federal civil rights laws and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, or sex. ATENCIÓN: si habla español, tiene a su disposición servicios gratuitos de asistencia lingüística. Llame al 1-833-735-4515 (TTY 711). 注意:如果您使用繁體中文,您可以免費獲得語言援助服務。請致電 1-833-735-4515 (TTY 711).

Content last updated: October 1, 2021