At Hyers and Associates, we work with Medicare prescription Part D drug plans every day. Whether it’s Medicare Open Enrollment or your new to Medicare and need a Part D plan to compliment your supplemental insurance, we can help.
Our team works with several different insurance companies and we can help you find a Part D plan that best fits your prescription needs and pharmacy choice. So let’s take a look at what you’ll want to know to get started.
Medicare Part D coverage are private policies offered by insurance companies – not the government. You don’t have to sign up for a plan, but you may face a Late Enrollment Penalty later if you miss your Open Enrollment window. This penalty will continue as long as you have the Part D coverage. It is best to sign up for one right away even if you’re jus on a few inexpensive prescriptions. The penalty will add up quick if/when you do enroll later.
Every year the insurance companies submit their plans to Medicare for their approval. All of the insurance companies must meet the requirements of Medicare to qualify as a Part D prescription provider.
If you have prescriptions you are already taking on a regular basis, you’ll want to make sure they are covered by the plan. You can do this yourself using the Medicare Plan Finder Tool, but it might be easier to work us. We do this everyday. There are several ‘tiers’ in the plans which will determine your copay or coinsurance for your particular medications.
You want to factor in the plan’s premiums, deductible amount and copays to see which policy offers you lowest overall costs. And many plans have preferred pharmacies that can lower your costs too – so it’s best to plug in more than one at time.
And you don’t want to assume that the plan you have one year will be the best for the next year. It’s not uncommon for Medicare Part D Drug plans to change significantly year over year.
Do You Have Other Drug Coverage Options?
If you have drug coverage through your employer or a government provider such as the Veterans Administration, Tricare or Indian Health Service, you may not need a Part D plan. These other insurance offerings usually qualify as creditable coverage. It’s best to talk with someone in the know before making any changes to your existing coverage and/or enrolling in a Stand-Alone Part D so that you don’t make any mistakes.
If you are enrolled in a Medicare Advantage (Medicare Part C), and your prescriptions are included in said plan, you don’t enroll in Part D. If you do, you will be dropped from the Medicare Advantage program and returned to original Medicare Part A & B. Some Advantage plans (Medical Savings Accounts and Cost Plans for example )do not offer Part D coverage, however. Again, there’s a lot to know, so make sure you’re getting good advice before acting.
How Much will Part D Prescription Coverage Cost Me?
There are several competing plans offered in all states. In most areas, you’ll see 20-30 different plans offered from an array of different insurance companies. Most policies are around $20 a month give or take.
You don’t want to sign up for the plan with the cheapest premiums, however. Your drug copays might be much higher with that plan and wind up costing you more overall.
There’s a bit of a science to choosing the best plan and we can help you decide. You’ll have several individual items to factor into your personal choice.
How Do I Pay for My Part D Prescription Coverage?
You can pay the premiums for your coverage the same as any other insurance premium. You can be billed monthly, or use have the premiums deducted from your bank account or credit card. Alternatively, you can have the premiums deducted directly from your Social Security check.
If you chose the Social Security option, it may take up to 3 months to put that in place. And if you are changing plans, it can take another few months before it’s all squared away – so that may not be the best choice. If that happens the first 3 monthly premiums will be deducted from your third check, and after that, it will be just one month at a time.
Need Help or Information? Call Us!
The Hyers and Associates team members work with the insurance providers for Part D prescription coverage and Medicare Supplement Plans every day. We can help you navigate through the various companies and providers so you’ll make the best choice for your needs. We are here to help, so give us a call.