Wednesday, October 25, 2006
the next open enrollment period for Medicare Part D approaches,
Medicare agency officials say that 2007 Medicare Part D plan options
will pose little problem and little change for enrollees. This is not the case. It's time we told the Administration and Congress to tell the truth about Medicare Part D.
Not concerned about enrollment because there are more options this year?
Be ready to work. Analysts say that the variety in Part D plan benefit structures makes it harder to compare plans and increases the difficulty of making an informed and meaningful decision.
Not concerned because costs will go down as plans compete for customers? Be ready to shop. The cost of the lowest price plan has increased in virtually every state, and in some states the cost has more than doubled. The lowest monthly premium for coverage beyond the basic package is almost $15 more per month than the "average" monthly premium amount of $24.
Not concerned because your plan worked for you last year? Be ready to change. Part D plans may change their formularies (list of covered drugs), tiers, utilization management tools, exceptions and appeals processes, and other aspects of their Part D plans, so even beneficiaries who were satisfied with their plan in 2006 need to review their options for 2007.
The facts aren't being presented to you. Support fair and accurate information. Support a single prescription drug benefit in the traditional Medicare program by sending a letter to your government officials.