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Important Message: To get health insurance, you must sign up during an enrollment period. Vermont Health Connect has a Special Enrollment Period open now through October 1, and uninsured Vermonters can enroll in a qualified health plan during this time. Under the American Rescue Plan Act, Vermonters can get more financial help when they enroll through Vermont Health Connect. Vermonters who have insurance directly through Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont or MVP Health Care® can transfer their plan to Vermont Health Connect now to get premium tax credits.  Vermonters who are eligible for Medicaid can enroll at any time.

Starting Medicare

Medicare is the federal health insurance program for people who are:

  • Age 65 or older
  • Under age 65 and have had Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) for a certain amount of time
  • Under age 65 with end-stage renal disease

Medicare is run by the federal government, not Vermont Health Connect.

If you already have a Vermont Health Connect qualified health plan when you become eligible for Medicare, you can keep it as long as you pay full price for your plan. But, don't wait to enroll in Medicare, even if you have a qualified health plan. If you wait to enroll in Medicare, you may have to pay a penalty when you enroll later. Vermonters who are eligible for Medicare can’t get financial help from Vermont Health Connect.

Vermonters who are already enrolled in Medicare can’t sign up for a new qualified health plan through Vermont Health Connect.

If you are enrolled in Medicaid for Children and Adults (MCA) and become eligible for Medicare, Vermont Health Connect will look at your eligibility and tell you if you can keep Medicaid. There are different rules for Medicaid for the Aged, Blind and Disabled (MABD) and Medicaid for Children and Adults.  Once you become eligible for Medicare, Vermont Health Connect will send you an application to find out if you can get Medicaid for the Aged, Blind and Disabled.

If you are applying for Medicaid for the first time and already have Medicare, you can apply using the 205ALLMED application. This application works for both MCA and MABD types of Medicaid.

To learn more about Medicaid for Children and Adults, call Vermont Health Connect at 1-855-899-9600. To learn more about Medicaid for the Aged Blind and Disabled, call Green Mountain Care at 1-800-250-8427.

Penalties for Late Enrollment

If you don’t sign up for Medicare when you’re first eligible, you may have to pay more when you sign up later:

Get Help with Medicare

The Vermont Association of Area Agencies on Aging can help you decide when, and how, to enroll in Medicare. Local agencies can also help:

Help Paying Medicare Costs

Medicare Savings Programs (MSPs) can help Vermonters pay Medicare costs. To learn more about Medicare Savings Programs, call Green Mountain Care at 1-800-250-8427 Monday through Friday, 8AM to 4:30 PM.