Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin wants to remind the state's 1.3 million Medicare recipients that the Medicare Part D annual election period started Nov. 15, and will continue through the end of this year.
"The enrollment period has begun, so now Medicare recipients have approximately three more weeks to review their current coverage and make a decision about which plan to choose for the upcoming year," said Commissioner Wayne Goodwin. "North Carolinians have many prescription drug plans from which to choose - so many in fact, that the decision-making process can be daunting. Before you make any changes, call SHIIP at the Department of Insurance. We can help you understand your options."The Department's SHIIP Division, or the Seniors' Health Insurance Information Program, employs trained staff who can answer questions about Medicare Part D.
Commissioner Goodwin also reminds Medicare recipients that financial assistance with Medicare Part D expenses may be available. "North Carolina has more than 80,000 people on Medicare who could be receiving Medicare's Low-Income Subsidy (Extra Help Program) benefits, but have not yet signed up. My staff at SHIIP can help you determine if you're eligible for this extra help and assist you in the application process. Call SHIIP today."
For the coming year, North Carolina will have 47 prescription drug plans (PDPs) available to Medicare beneficiaries, and 20 companies will administer the plans. Some existing plans also have changed their prescription formularies, monthly premiums and deductibles. [Click here for a link to the chart of the most current Part D companies and PDPs.]
For questions about Medicare Part D's annual election period, PDPs or other Medicare products, call SHIIP at 1-800-443-9354 or visit the SHIIP Web site.