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Price changes in Medicare Part D

POSTED: December 25, 2007 5:02 a.m.
ATLANTA — Pricing for Medicare Part D Drug Plan Options is going up along with most other things in 2008, so it’s time to have a conversation with your parents, grandparents, relatives or neighbors about their prescription drug plan.
Some plans have changed what they include as benefits, and many have increased their premiums, while a few have decreased. Medicare deductibles will increase from $265 in 2007 to $275 for 2008, the initial coverage limit will increase from $2,400 to $2,510, out-of-pocket expenses will increase from $3,850 to $4,050, and total covered drug spending at the out of pocket threshold will go from $5,451.25 to $5,726.25.
The Division of Aging Services’ GeorgiaCares program and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services are advising people who wish to make a change to do so soon to ensure that their coverage will be available on Jan. 1. The open enrollment period ends Dec. 31, 2007.
“People really need to make sure that the plan they are currently enrolled in will be the best plan for them in 2008,” said DAS Director Maria Greene. “Our trained counselors can help them understand the new changes so they can make an informed decision.”
GeorgiaCares has trained counselors who offer free information, counseling and assistance to Medicare beneficiaries on Medicare, Medicaid and Medigap matters, including Medicare Advantage health plan options, long-term care insurance, claims, resolution to billing problems, information and referral on public benefit programs aimed at those with limited incomes and assets, and other health care insurance information.
Beneficiaries who want to consider all of their options will have access to help from many sources including: a notice of any coverage changes from their drug plan; the enhanced Medicare Drug Plan Finder at www.medicare.gov; the Medicare & You 2008 annual handbook that explains Medicare coverage; 1-800-Medicare (1-800-633-4227) which will be available 24/7; www.mymedicarematters.org for consumers, www.mimedicareimporta.org/ for Spanish-speaking  clients and GeorgiaCares - Local Help for People with Medicare, 1-800-669-8387.
 

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