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What Do Medicare Drug Plans (Part D) Cover and How to Save the Most Money With This Plan

As individuals grow older, health care becomes an increasing priority with increasing age. Once an individual reaches the age of 65, they’re automatically eligible for Medicare through the government. Same may find however, that Medicare is not all inclusive when it comes to health insurance surprisingly.

One of the most vital and common uses of health insurance is it helps pay the cost of prescription medication. The basic provision of Medicare although is Part A which is only hospitalization and doctor’s visits. Prescription drug coverage, on the other hand, is under Part D and it is considered as an “optional” category under Medicare. Despite the fact that it may not be a standard coverage benefit, it is still vital and there are ways to save money while using Medicare Part D coverage.

What Medicare Part D Covers

Medicare Part D covers prescription drugs under Medicare. Medicare Part D typically covers a wide variety of prescription medication but each drug plan has a list of covered drugs. It is also an additional cost to standard Medicare health plans, the cost will vary based on the medication an individual takes. Typically, Medicare drug plans do have a monthly cost, a deductible, co-payments/coinsurance, and other costs just like a regular health insurance plan.

Saving Money With Medicare Part D Plans

There are a variety of ways to save money with Medicare prescription drug plans, especially with the help of private insurance companies or insurance providers within the health insurance marketplace. Before exploring your options to save money with Medicare Part D, be sure to evaluate your current prescription medications that you take or will need to take in the near future. In addition, also check the retail value of your medication to avoid getting a plan where your medication will fall into the “donut hole” as listed above.

Ways To Save On Medicare Part D:

  • Purchase Humana Health Insurance using their Medicare Advantage Plans
  • Shop and enroll in a subsided health insurance plan through the insurance marketplace
  • Enroll in a Medicare Savings program.
  • State Offered Insurance Programs
  • Apply for Dual Enrollment with Medicaid

These programs will look into certain factors when determining your eligibility for these assistance programs under Medicare Part D. These can include your income from employment (if applicable), income from disability, income from social security, or sources such as the amount in your checking/savings, retirement funds, stocks, and bonds.

The Medicare Part D Coverage Gap

Medicare Part D also is known for the coverage gap (aka the Medicare donut hole), which is a period of payment for prescription drug expenses that have a cost between the initial coverage limit and the catastrophic-coverage threshold. This is where drugs that are “listed” as coverage by Medicare Part D may not be covered due to pricing, this can also occur if a prescription drug manufacturer feels the need to increase the retail price of medication.

Saving Money On Prescription Drugs with Medicaid While Receiving Medicare

Medicaid is your state’s health care provider for low-income individuals with limited resources. Since Medicaid is operated by the state you reside in, the statues for dual-enrollment with Medicare may vary. It does not make a difference whether you apply before or after receiving Medicare. As long as you meet your state’s qualifications for Medicaid. An exception to consider however is if you’re on disability and are in the 24 month waiting period before becoming eligible for Medicare, you may be eligible for Medicaid during that time period. Contingent on your state’s Medicaid policies, you may also be able to continue to receive Medicaid after Medicare coverage starts hence the dual enrollment benefit. With this provision you are able to receive coverage for prescription drugs under Medicaid, although it may not be the same as Medicare Part D, it will still cover a broad range of medications that you currently are prescribed to or will need to take in the future.

How To Apply For Medicare Part D

At a minimum, all Medicare Advantage plans must offer the same Medicare Part A and Part B benefits as Original Medicare. To get Medicare Part D You must have Original Medicare, in order to enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan through a private insurance provider.

  1. Determine Your Medical Needs Whether You Will Need Medicare Part A Only or Medicare Part B in addition to Part A.
  2. Fill out an application in One Of Three Ways: Online at www.socialsecurity.gov (there is an option where someone can help you fill out the application online if needed), Calling Social Security at 1-800-772-1213, OR Visit Your Local Social Security Office
  3. Wait For Approval Of Medicare Part A
  4. Once enrolled in Medicare Part A, Complete an Application for Enrollment in Part B (CMS-40B) if you choose to have Part B. Skip this step if you do not want Part B. NOTE: Sometimes you may automatically be enrolled, if so and you do not want Part B. Follow the instructions back or call Social Security.
  5. Follow The Online Steps To Enroll In Medicare Part D.