Part D Prescription Drug Coverage
Request a Medicare Part D Rx Quote, Compare Your Options, and Save on Your Prescription Drugs!
Medicare Part D is a federal program to subsidize the cost of prescription drugs for Medicare beneficiaries in the United States. This benefit is administered through private insurance companies which are then reimbursed by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Part D plans only cover prescriptions, both generic and name-brand. No other benefits are provided with a Part D plan.
There are two options for obtaining a Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plan (or PDP). You can opt for a PDP only, with no other coverage, or you can purchase a Medicare Advantage (MA) plan. A Medicare Advantage plan covers both medical services and prescription drugs. Within these two categories, there are many different companies and plans to choose from.
Keep in mind that each insurance company has its own list of covered medications. Therefore, it is crucial for you to make sure that you choose a plan that meets your needs by covering all or most of your recurring monthly prescriptions.
Cost for Medicare Part D Plan Coverage
Medicare Part D has monthly premiums
Like Medicare Part B, Medicare Part D plans have monthly premiums. Average nationwide premium is $52.36 per month, but the premium will vary depending on which plan you choose, your location, which insurance company is offering the plan and your income. When paying the monthly premium, you have the option to have the payment automatically deducted from your Social Security check. The insurance company you choose can arrange this payment method. You can also choose to have the premiums automatically deducted from a checking account, or pay through the mail.
When to Sign-up for Part D Coverage – Enrollment Periods
You can enroll for Part D Prescription Drug Coverage when you become eligible at age 65, or during the open enrollment period.
1. Annual Enrollment Election Period
The Annual Enrollment Election Period runs from October 15 through December 7 of every year. During this time, you may enroll in or change Medicare Prescription Drug Plans under the following qualifications:
- You are entitled to Medicare Part A or are enrolled in Part B.
- Your permanent residence is within the United States.
- You must continue to pay your Medicare Part B Premium, if not otherwise paid for under Medicaid or by another third party.
- You are not enrolled or do not plan to stay enrolled in another Medicare Prescription Drug Plan.
- You may enroll in only one Medicare Prescription Drug Plan at a time and may not be enrolled in a Medicare Advantage Plan at the same time. If you choose a Medicare Advantage Plan, your prescription drug coverage is included.
If you currently have a Medicare Supplement plan, you can also switch to a different plan during the Annual Enrollment Election Period
2. Initial Enrollment Period
The Initial Enrollment Period is a seven-month period that includes the month during which you first become eligible (at age 65 or earlier if you qualify due to a disability or end-stage renal disease) plus the three months before and the three months after the month in which you become eligible.
If you do not enroll during your seven-month Initial Enrollment period, you will have an opportunity to join a prescription drug plan every year from October 15 through December.
However, if you enroll after the Initial Period you will be assessed a late enrollment penalty.
The late penalty is currently 1% of the national average monthly premium for each month you were eligible but were not enrolled in a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan. The penalty will be added to your premium for as long as you are enrolled in Medicare’s prescription drug coverage.
You can delay enrollment in Medicare’s prescription drug coverage without paying a penalty if you have prior
creditable coverage on an individual policy or through an employer group policy. Creditable coverage means you have a drug benefit that equals (or is better than) Medicare’s standard prescription drug coverage.
3. Special Enrollment Period
A Special Enrollment Period is available in certain situations, such as if you become disabled or move outside of the service area your plan provides. In these cases, you may enroll in or change Medicare Prescription Drug Plans at any time.
How to Save Money on Your Prescriptions
Since there is a late-enrollment penalty for delaying the purchase of a PDP, you may benefit from signing up for a Part D plan even if you are not currently on any medications. In this way, you can choose the least expensive plan in order to avoid the penalty, with the option of switching to a more comprehensive plan if your needs change.
Quotes and How to Apply
If you are interested in receiving a quote on Part D prescription coverage, we can research your options and help you make a decision regarding which plan is right for you. We are able to offer quotes from a variety of carriers, such as:
- Blue Cross Blue Shield
- United Healthcare
If you are not comfortable with the online quote process, or if you have any other questions, please contact one of our MediGap Personal Benefits Manager at 800-913-3416. You may also e-mail us at info@MediGapAdvisors.com, or schedule a free consultation. Remember that our services are offered to you with zero cost and with no obligation. Our goal at MediGap Advisors is simply to help you understand your Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Plan and help you make informed decisions regarding your coverage.