Medicare is once again on the rise. This time the premiums for Medicare Part D – the prescription drug benefit – are expected to increase by an average of 10 percent for many Medicare beneficiaries if they stay with their current plans. This is according to a study that was recently released.
This is the second study which found that on average Medicare Part D premiums will increase by about 10 percent in 2011. The report also found that over three million Medicare beneficiaries will see their plans discontinued next year due to mandates in the federal health reform law that insurers eliminate duplicative plans.
The Study Results
The study found that average monthly premiums will rise from $36.90 in 2010 to $40.72 in 2011. Fewer Part D plans will be offered next year than any year since Medicare began including prescription drug plans in 2006.
The reduction likely was caused by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) attempting to reduce the number of duplicate and low-enrollment plans. The outcome will be that many Medicare beneficiaries will be able to choose from 33 stand-alone Medicare Part D plans (PDP)
Fewer PDPs will be offered in 2011 than in any previous year, the report found. Most of the plan reductions are the result of plan sponsors reducing the number of separate PDP offerings or from mergers among sponsors.
The analysis is based on the 2010 Medicare drug plan information released in late September by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.
Medicare Beneficiaries Need to be Proactive
“It’s important that Medicare beneficiaries who are looking for the right health coverage, whether that means a Medicare Part D prescription drug plan or a Medicare supplement insurance plan, take their time and consider what is right for them,” suggests Alan Weinstock, insurance broker, at MedicareSupplementPlans.com.
For seniors looking for the right prescription plan, that means comparing the cost of the premium, the amount of any deductibles and whether there is a co-payment or co-insurance. For Medicare beneficiaries who want to supplement their health care, one option is to check out MedicareSupplementPlans.com, a web site which specializes in Medicare supplement insurance, also known as Medigap insurance. It gives those 65 and older the opportunity to compare rates, plans and benefits from several prominent insurance companies.
The best Medicare Supplemental Insurance is one that provides full security to the people and hence is called Medigap, Medicare supplemental plans should be beneficial for the people.
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