As you or loved ones near the age of 65, it becomes necessary to have at least a basic understanding of Medicare and its many different parts to ensure that when your time comes to pick a plan and consider additional coverage options, you are choosing the combination best for your medical and financial health. For a brief overview of what Florida Medicare Part D is, covers, and works, continue reading this article. Should further questions arise after reading, or if you decide you are ready to further investigate, please feel free to call and request a quote or complete the form on our website today.
What is Medicare Part D Florida?
Medicare Part D is the part of Medicare that is available as a separate plan and helps individuals cover their prescription drug costs. For this reason, it is also referred to as the Medicare Prescription drug benefit. How Medicare Part D works is that the United States federal-government runs a program that is used to subsidize the costs related to prescription drugs and insurance premiums for those who are beneficiaries of Medicare.
When did Medicare Part D start?
Medicare drug plans were written into the Medicare Modernization Act of 2003. This Act also made changes to Medicare Part C health care plans and was put into effect in January of 2006.
How does Medicare Part D work with other insurance?
If you already have insurance that covers prescription medication costs, it is usually in your best interest to remain enrolled in your current plan for as long as possible. If you try to enroll in both, how Medicare Part D works with other insurance plans will depend on the insurance in question. Again, this list is not comprehensive but can be used as a general guide to determining how Part D will work with other types of insurance. As always, please call if you have further questions or would like more accurate information.
Employer Coverage (including union) - Employer coverage can come from a job held by either yourself or a spouse. Yearly, your employer will send details about prescription drug coverage. Should you choose to join a Medicare Part D plan, it is likely that yourself and any dependents listed on your employer provided coverage will lose their health coverage.
COBRA Insurance - In many situations, enrolling in Medicare Part B and adding a Part D plan is preferable to carrying COBRA insurance. However, should you decide on COBRA insurance with drug coverage that is creditable, there will be a stated special enrollment period in which you can add a Part D Plan with no penalty upon the cessation of the COBRA insurance.
Medigap - It is usually advantageous to you to opt for a Medicare Plan as opposed to a Medigap policy, as Medigap plans are not creditable and often lead to higher priced drug plans later. It is no longer possible to sell a Medigap policy that has prescription drug coverage, however, if your current plan has drug coverage you are grandfathered in and can keep the plan. However, if you do have the prescription coverage on a Medigap plan and purchase a Medicare Part D plan, your Medigap policy must remove the prescription drug coverage and adjust your payments.
Medicaid - Prescription costs are covered by Medicaid, but if you want Medicare to cover your prescription costs you will need to join a Medicare Part D plan.
Who is Medicare Part D eligible?
Medicare Part D enrollment is available to anyone who qualifies for, and has signed up for Medicare Parts A & B is eligible to enroll in a Part D plan.
What does Medicare Part D cost?
Florida Medicare Part D cost will largely depend on the company you choose and if you are eligible for any Extra Help. In 2017, the average premium cost per month was $34. This rate will vary, again, by company and region. It is important to note that while a low premium sounds great, you should also take into account additional yearly costs, such as deductibles and the copayments for each of your medications. Add up total annual costs to ensure that you can afford the chosen plan. If you need help in determining what does Medicare Part D cost per month, a member of our staff will gladly assist you in breaking down the plans and comparing costs.
What is the Medicare Donut Hole?
Many Medicare Part D plans have what is called a coverage gap, or "donut hole." This refers to a temporary limit on what your drug plan will cover for your prescription medications. Not everyone will hit this coverage gap, but those who do have done so because between you and your plan, you have paid $3,700 for covered medications. The rate at which your plan will cover medications will change until the next limit is met, causing you to pay more during this period. The rate listed above was the limit for 2017, but this number is subject to change each year and does not apply to those who have Extra Help.
Where to sign up for Medicare Part D?
There are many insurance providers who offer Medicare Part D coverage in Florida. If you are ready to explore the various options and determine which provider carries the plan that works best for your situation, our professional team can help provide a comprehensive list of where to get Medicare Part D in your area. We can then assist you with the application process.
When is Medicare Part D open enrollment?
Unless it is your first time signing up for a Medicare Policy, Open Enrollment is an annual event that falls between October 15th and December 7th. This time period is to be used for comparing current coverage with other available plans. You may choose to stay enrolled in your current plan or switch to another during this period.
Which Medicare Part D Plan is best?
Many different companies offer Medicare Part D plans, and all are unique to the company. Each plan will have what is known as a formulary, in which they list covered prescription medications and how much one can expect to pay for them. Because of the differences, no one plan is going to be perfect for every subscriber. Instead of wanting to figure out the best company, figure out which company best fits your current coverage needs.
How to change your Medicare Part D Plan?
Even those who take the time to carefully compare and choose their Medicare Part D Plan may run into circumstances in which they consider a change. Perhaps your plan is simply no longer available, or has changed the drug formulary and your medications are no longer covered. Medicare Part D Plans Florida have an annual event ranging from October 15 to December 7 each year, during which plan subscribers are able to switch, or cancel plans. In particular cases, if specific events happen that fall outside of the window for open enrollment, you may be eligible for a special enrollment period.
Special enrollment periods exist to ensure that plan subscribers are never stuck without coverage and make exceptions for special life situations. While this is not the whole list of special circumstances, it gives you an idea of what would qualify. If you have questions about your particular situation or have additional questions, we are more than happy to help you determine if you qualify for a special enrollment period.
Special Enrollment Period Qualifiers:
- You recently moved, and are no longer inside of your plans covered area
- Your move put you in range for a better plan that you would like to benefit from
- You were outside of the United States, but have permanently moved back
- You have made a move to, or out of, a skilled nursing facility
- You have been released from jail
- You are no longer eligible for Medicaid benefits
- You lost employer coverage
- You want to move from a Medicare plan to an employer plan
- Your Medicare plan has been terminated
- A mistake was made when signing up for a plan
Why should you call our agency for your Medicare Part D needs?
As an independently owned and operated insurance company, we have the unique advantage of being able to put our customers needs ahead of the needs of a particular insurance company. We work with several companies, and can essentially shop around for your insurance, matching you to the provider that best fits your health related and budgetary needs. The ability to shop around can save you significant amounts of money, as the plan costs from one provider to the next can be vastly different.
If you have further questions about who offers Medicare Part D plans in Florida, how much does Medicare Part D cost, what Medicare Part D covers, or how to apply for Medicare Part D, we are ready to help. Start the process of answering your questions by giving our office a call, or simply request a quote via our website today.