Paying for Medicare Part D
By Gary Phillips
Medicare Part D is the prescription drug coverage of Medicare. Medicare Part D is outlined in Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage.
What You Pay for Medicare Drug Coverage
Typical costs throughout the year are:
- Monthly premium
- Annual deductible
- Costs if you get Extra Help
- Costs during the coverage gap
- Costs if you pay a Late Enrollment Penalty
Factors Affecting Part D Costs
Your actual drug plan costs will vary depending on:
- The drugs you use
- The plan you choose
- Whether your drugs are on your plan’s formulary
- Whether you go to a pharmacy in your plan’s network
- Whether you get Extra Help paying your Part D costs
Monthly fees vary by plan and could be higher based on income. You may have your premium deducted from your monthly Social Security payment.
This is the amount you must pay each year for your prescriptions before your Medicare drug plan kicks in. Deductibles vary between plans but can never be higher than $320 in 2012.
This is the amount you pay for each of your prescriptions after you have paid the deductible. Some plans have different levels or “tiers” of coinsurance or copayments, with different costs for different types of drugs.
This means you pay a percentage of the cost of the drug (for example, 25%). With a copayment, you pay a set amount for all drugs on a tier (for example, $10). You’ll typically pay a lower copayment for generic drugs than brand-names.
About the Author
Gary Phillips is a licensed insurance agent based in western North Carolina. He specializes in the senior market and is knowledgeable in multiple insurance lines including Medicare, Medigap, Long-Term Care, Part D Prescription Drugs, Part C Medicare Advantage, Health, Life and Final Expense insurance. He also enjoys writing and helping others. www.bizpartner.homestead.com
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