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Medicare Releases New List of Approved Part D Drug Plans; Enrollment Period to Begin
 

The annual enrollment period for Medicare Part D, the prescription drug coverage program, begins November 15, 2006, and ends December 31, 2006. The program is voluntary and can be especially helpful for people who have high prescription drug costs and no drug coverage. Coverage for persons enrolling during the upcoming enrollment period will begin on January 1, 2007.

People currently enrolled in a Medicare prescription drug plan should carefully review their coverage to ensure that it still meets their needs. Premiums, copayments and the medications the plan covers may have changed for 2007. If you decide to switch plans, you will need to enroll in a new plan during the November 15-December 31, 2006, enrollment period. If you decide that you want to keep your current plan, you do not have to re-enroll.

Medicare has released a list of approved plans for 2007. Additional plans are expected to be added to the list prior to the beginning of the enrollment period. The best way to review and compare plans is to use the Medicare Prescription Drug Plan Finder available on the Medicare web site at www.medicare.gov.

Some people may find that their current plan has decided to discontinue services. If that is the case, they will have to select a new plan to maintain their prescription drug coverage, and must enroll in a new plan between November 15, 2006, and December 31, 2006. Consumers should watch their mail for information about any changes. If a plan decides to discontinue services, it must notify its customers and outline all the available options. These notices are expected to be mailed during October.

Consumers can get free personalized help at 1-800-Medicare (1-800-633-4227). Services are available 24 hours a day and seven days a week. In Texas, consumers also can call 1-800-252-9240 and ask to speak with a local benefits counselor in their area. Benefits counselors can provide one-on-one assistance in enrolling in a Medicare prescription drug plan.

Agents and companies who use high-pressure tactics or make misleading statements in order to sell insurance may be violating Medicare and Texas insurance rules. Consumers should document what happened and file a complaint with the plan, 1-800-Medicare, or the Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) at 1-800-252-3439. Also, no one from Medicare will call you. Medicare advises consumers to not give their Social Security numbers or bank account information to any callers. If you believe you have been the victim of insurance fraud, or attempted fraud, call TDI's Fraud Hot Line, 1-888-327-8818.

For more information contact: PIO@tdi.state.tx.us

 

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courtesy:https://www.apps.tdi.state.tx.us

 

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