Seniors Face Skyrocketing Premiums And Out Of Pocket Costs As Part D Enrollment Begins, USA
November 15th begins what has become an incredibly complicated annual ritual for seniors enrolled in the private Medicare Part D prescription drug program. Unfortunately, in 2008 beneficiaries will face even larger premiums, out-of-pocket costs, and a growing “doughnut hole”.
Seniors can’t afford to assume their current drug plan will provide the best coverage for their needs in 2008. It’s estimated that 75% of seniors will face a premium increase next year if they don’t switch plans. The vast majority of Part D enrollees are enrolled in the top ten drug plans and all but two will raise their premiums again in January. Many plans are also making changes to their formularies and out-of-pocket costs that could surprise seniors if they don’t compare plans before re-enrolling. More than 2.5 million low-income seniors must switch plans this year to avoid having to pay out-of-pocket costs for the first time.
“Changing formularies, skyrocketing premiums, unchecked out-of-pocket costs benefit insurers not seniors. Three years after its creation, privatized Part D is still so complicated many seniors will choose to stay with their current plan even if it no longer serves their needs. We encourage all beneficiaries to get help and do the research needed to ensure changing formularies and premiums won’t leave them vulnerable next year.
B. Kennelly, President/CEO
The Part D open enrollment period runs until December 31st; however, seniors are encouraged to enroll by December 7th in order to begin coverage January 1st.
The National Committee has provided a Medicare Part D Frequently Asked Question guide online
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