The cost of prescription drugs has been steadily increasing over the past few decades, with prices for some brand-named drugs prescribed most often to seniors increasing by 12% every year from 2013-2018.1 It’s important to review your Medicare coverage on an annual basis to ensure it still meets your needs and fits within your budget.
One of the easiest times to review your Medicare Prescription Drug plan is during the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period. AEP runs from October 15-December 7 every year and allows Medicare beneficiaries the opportunity to make changes to their current coverage. There’s no requirement to take action during this time, but here are three reasons why you should consider shopping Medicare Prescription Drug Plans during the Fall Annual Enrollment Period.
Three Reasons to Shop Prescription Drug Plans During the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period
You Could Save on Medicare Prescription Drug Plan Costs
Most Medicare Prescription Drug plans charge a monthly premium that varies by plan and where you live. Medicare Part D plans can change their formulary and benefits each year, so it’s typically in your best interest to review your drug coverage during the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period. Even if the cost of your medications doesn’t change, it’s possible you could find the same amount of coverage at a more affordable price or more coverage at a similar price. If you’re happy with your prescription drug plan, you can simply allow it to renew automatically at the end of the year.
Better Understand Your Medicare Prescription Drug Plan Coverage
By working with SelectQuote, we can help explain what your current plan covers (and doesn’t cover), what your options are, and make sure you’re receiving both the benefits you deserve and all the coverage you need. Medicare Part D helps Medicare beneficiaries cover the costs of their prescription medications, but it can be beneficial to understand the four phases of prescription drug coverage:
- Medicare Deductible Period – During the deductible period, you’ll be expected to pay the full negotiated amount for your covered prescription drug costs until you meet your Medicare Part D deductible.
- Medicare Initial Coverage Period – During the Medicare Initial Coverage Period, your Medicare Part D plan will pay some of the prescription drug costs, while you will pay a copayment (a set dollar amount) or coinsurance (a percentage of the drug’s cost) set by your plan.
- Medicare Coverage Gap (Donut Hole) Period – In the Medicare Coverage Gap period—sometimes referred to as the Donut Hole—you will pay 25% of the retail cost for both brand name and generic prescription drugs.
- Medicare Catastrophic Coverage Period – While in the Medicare Catastrophic Coverage Period, Medicare Part D beneficiaries are only required to pay a small coinsurance amount or copayment during the remainder of the calendar year.
Ensure Your Medicare Prescription Drug Plan is Right for You
Your prescription drug needs are unique to you, as should your Medicare coverage. And as a Medicare beneficiary, you have a number of choices to make, but one of the most important can be selecting the right prescription drug plan. The Medicare Annual Enrollment Period can seem overwhelming, but that’s where we come in.
Find the Right Medicare Prescription Drug Plan for You with SelectQuote
In just minutes, we can compare Medicare Prescription Drug plan options available in your area to ensure you’re getting the benefits you deserve. The service is free and there’s no obligation to enroll.