January 2020 MediGap Advisors Health & Wealth Newsletter  Vol. 16, Issue 1

Making the Most of Medicare Part D
in 2020

One of the most expensive parts of long-term health care is the prescription medications that become more and more necessary to our ongoing health. Even with supplemental Medicare plans like Part D, the rising cost of pharmaceuticals is making it difficult for a lot of people to get by, especially those on fixed incomes.

In honor of the bright and shiny New Year, I have a few pointers that can help you save big bucks on those small pills, and make the most of your Medicare Part D plan in 2020.

1.) Go Generic

The way our current healthcare system is setup, many doctors will recommend the first medication that comes to mind, which, more often than not, is the big name-brand ‘designer’ medicine. If you are being prescribed a prescription of any variety, ask your doctor or physician if there is a comparable generic brand that might do the trick. More often than not, these off-brand medications offer the same active ingredients at a fraction of the cost.

2.) Keep an eye on your deductible

Although Medicare Part D deductibles can vary depending on the provider, there are upper-level limits that no provider is allowed to exceed. In 2020, this limit is $435.00.

Once your Part D deductible has been met, then the majority of your remaining prescription costs for the calendar year should be covered by your Medicare plan. For many folks, this isn’t until later in the year, which is why we recommend getting prescriptions filled up at the end of the year before the deductible is reset.

3.) Split your medication in half (literally)

The practice of splitting larger-dose pills in half is becoming more and more popular among Medicare recipients, and in fact, is openly supported by many doctors and health plans alike. Because larger doses are often available in the same size pill and for the same price, requesting a higher dosage prescription is a clever way to reduce out-of-pocket expenses (while still taking the same amount of medicine each day).

But please note: not all pills can be split. Make sure you have confirmation from your physician that your medication is okay for splitting, and until then stick with the recommended dosage. Because some medicines are time released (such as many pain medications) splitting the dosage can lead to health complications that no one wants to deal with.

4.) Price shop with Wal-Mart, Mail Order, & More

Even a Part D coverage plan is not guaranteed to get you the best retail price on the drugs that you need. In fact, megastores like Wal-Mart have been found to offer generic drugs at significantly lower prices than what Part D plans provide over 20% of the time.

Mail-order prescriptions can also be an easy way to save a few bucks, and have the added bonus of being delivered straight to your doorstep.

Don’t have Part D coverage?

While there are some restrictions as to when you can enroll in Medicare Part D, the process is easier than you might think, especially with our help.

Enrollment is possible during a 7 month period that begins 3 months before your 65th birthday, or during the Annual Enrollment Period every fall (October 15th, to be precise).

If you have missed the Annual Enrollment Period, then perhaps you qualify for one of the Special Enrollment Periods detailed by Medicare.


To your health and wealth,

Wiley P. Long, III
President – MediGap Advisors





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