Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) patients should be aware that the open enrollment period to join the Medicare Prescription Drug Plan ends December 7th, 2013. Medicare Part D is a prescription drug insurance that is for people who have Medicare Part A, Part B or both but find difficulty affording their medication.
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If you take a lot of prescription drugs, you may know about the donut hole. If you're new to Medicare, the donut hole is a gap in your drug coverage under Medicare Part D. Here's how it works. Right now, each Part D plan covers up to $2,970 for medicines a year. That amount includes what you pay and what your insurance pays. Once you reach that limit, your prescription benefits go down. That's when you're in the gap -- the donut hole. For the time you're in the donut hole, your co-pay for medicines rises to 47.5% for brand-name prescriptions and 79% for generics. You pay this percentage on your medicines until you have spent $4,750.
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In time, the donut hole will go away. Each year from now until 2020, the percentage you pay during this gap in coverage will go down. In 2020, the hole will be gone. Then, you'll pay 25% for all prescriptions. It won't matter if you're buying brand name or generic drugs.
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There are several ways you can enroll: On the internet, by completing a paper application, or by calling 1-800-Medicare. If you enroll after the enrollment period (12/07/13) there may be additional cost. Your Social Worker can help you with questions you may have. Whether you want to enroll for this coverage, need help filling out paperwork or if you have any issues with the insurance plan, the Social Worker is available to assist you. Feel free to contact you Social Worker at your unit.
*Note: Do not forget to order your No BP/No Stick Medical Alert Bracelet!
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Howard, David, PhD. "Changes to Medicare With the Affordable Care Act." Http://www.webmd.com/. WebMD, LLC.
"Prescription Drug Insurance: Medicare Part D for People with Kidney Disease." Http://www.davita.com/. DaVita HealthCare Partners Inc