Medicare Drug Plans
2014 Medicare and Medigap Updates
Medicare drug plans, which are part D of Medicare and also known as “PDPs”, are available to everyone with Medicare, but to receive coverage for prescription drugs you must first join one of the Medicare drug plans. The plans available will vary in cost and types of drugs covered. Medicare Advantage Plans also offer comprehensive Medicare prescription drug coverage benefits.
Medicare drug plans are insurance policies designed to help members cover the cost of any prescription drugs required at any time. These plans can help members save considerable amounts of money on the cost of these prescription drugs. The insurance companies work with Medicare to provide this service and no matter what your illnesses, drug costs, or income, the drug insurance plans are available to you.
Anyone with Medicare Part A and/or Part B is entitled to join a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan, but if you have a Medicare Advantage Plan you need Part A and Part B. You can join one of the Medicare drug plans by filling in an application form, calling a telephone helpline, joining via the plan’s website, or using a MPDPF LINK. There is also a 1-800-MEDICARE telephone number available. Families should also have received a handbook called Medicare and You in the mail. The companies providing Medicare drug plans are not allowed to contact you directly, but you can contact them for more information about joining their plan. For further help with choosing the right plan, local community groups are also available to offer advice.
Plans can be signed up for or changed over between November 15 and December 31 each year. Coverage will then begin from the following January 1. All Medicare drug plans will vary since the plans are being set up by companies in the private sector. This means that some members may be restricted to only being able to use certain pharmacies. Some plans may also only cover certain drugs. All of these factors mean that it is vital that you pick the plan which adequately suits your requirements. As with any service, it is very important to check the details before you sign up. As well as variance in costs and choice of drugs, some plans report high levels of customer satisfaction, whereas others do not.
The costs of the Medicare drug plans will vary depending on which drugs are used and whether you are entitled to help with your Medicare Part D costs. If you believe you might qualify for help with the costs, you should contact the Social Security Administration for further information about applying.
A new law introduced by President Obama is designed to benefit those Medicare patients who fall into the coverage gap known as the “donut hole”. This is the period of time where all prescription costs must be paid for by the patient themselves. The new law states that patients with Medicare Part D will be entitled to a rebate of $250 from Medicare when they enter the coverage gap during 2010. In 2012 patients received a 50% discount on brand-name prescription drugs if they were covered by Medicare drug plans Part D.
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