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Medicare Part D

Answers to your Questions about Medicare Part D

1. Who is eligible for Medicare Part D?

Anyone 65 years and older currently receiving Medicare Part A, Part B or both, as well as some individuals under age 65 with certain disabilities.  Taking advantage of the benefit is voluntary and no one can be denied coverage for any reason.  Newly eligible individuals (those who turn 65 after the enrollment deadline) have three months before and after the month they become eligible to choose a prescription plan.

2. Where do I get Medicare Part D?

The new benefit is offered through private insurance plans.  Each plan has a list of covered drugs, deductibles, co-payments and premiums.  Prescription costs will depend on the plan selected and individual needs. Individuals with both Medicare and Medicaid coverage are automatically enrolled in Part D.  Individuals who meet certain income guidelines may be eligible for extra help in paying for prescription-related costs.  These income guidelines and applications for extra help are available through the Social Security Administration.

3. What if I have prescription coverage through other means?

Some prescription drug plans offered through employers or unions may have changed due to Medicare Part D.  Individuals need to check their current plan and contact their health care plan representative to ask about changes. 

4. When is the deadline for sign up?

The deadline for enrolling in Medicare Part D was May 15, 2006. The next open enrollment period will be November 15 through December 31, 2006. 

5. How do I decide whether to participate?

The decision is up to you, however you should thoroughly research your options and talk to people you trust before deciding to participate. 

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