In these troubled economic times, we worry for ourselves and our family. Fact is, these days many of us also are concerned about the health & welfare of our aging parents or loved ones with disabilities. Many of us know how expensive prescriptions are, but the reality is that Seniors pay hundreds of dollars a month just for their prescription drugs. Navigating the ins & outs of Medicare is no less than challenging. Questions about eligibility, program options & services are available at Medicare.gov or by dialing 1-800-medicare.
Interested given my work with folks with disabilities as well as aging parents of my own, I participated in a phone conference organized by Parent Bloggers Network. It was very informative, making me realize how much I don't know about services that could help my family or families with whom I work. Fielding our questions was Mike Freeman, respresentative of the Health Care Leadership Council & Medicare Today.
The Healthcare Leadership Council (HLC), a coalition of chief executives from all disciplines within the healthcare system, launched Medicare Today in November 2004 to reach out to Medicare beneficiaries who needed reliable information on how to get the greatest value from the new Medicare benefits. The Healthcare Leadership Council administers the partnership of over 400 national and local organization including AARP, National Association of Family Physicians, and National Alliance for Hispanic Health. Medicare Today develops innovative tools for use by all partners, commissions research studies, and undertakes earned media efforts and outreach to inform beneficiaries about the value of the new benefits under the Medicare Modernization Act (MMA). Medicare Today will continue beyond the initial enrollment period to provide continued assistance to beneficiaries and respond to media inquires and opportunities.
Medicare offers prescription drug coverage (Part D) for everyone with Medicare. This coverage may help you lower your prescription drug costs and help you protect against higher costs in the future. It can give you greater access to drugs that you can use to prevent complications of diseases and stay well. To get Medicare drug coverage, you must join a plan run by an insurance company or other private company approved by Medicare.
From now until the end of the year, Dec 31, it is open season for enrollment in the Medicare Part D prescription drug program or to change their current program. For more information about extra help with prescription drug costs and how to apply, visit www.socialsecurity.gov or call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213. TTY users should call 1-800-325-0778. ★
One interesting fact Mike shared was the satisfaction rate of those utilizing the prescription drug program. 90% were satisfied! That says alot! Here's a quote from the Medicare Today website:
Three years after Medicare Part D was made available, seniors enrolled in the program continue to feel extremely positive about it. Ninety percent of seniors enrolled in Medicare Part D are satisfied overall with the program - an increase of 12 percent since the benefit began - according to a new survey commissioned by Medicare Today and conducted by KRC research in September 2008.
Most folks don't always enroll in the plans that they might need - like prescription drug coverage provided by Medicare Part D. The good news is there are affordable plans in all 50 states, designed to fit a wide range of needs.
So if you or someone you know might benefit from medicare services, including the prescription drug plan, please point them in to these resources:
Thanks to Parent Bloggers for organizing the tele-talk & giving us a platform to obtain & share valuable information about the Medicare prescription drug plan.