Does Medicare offer Prescription Drug coverage?
Medicare Part D (Drug coverage) helps cover the cost of prescription drugs (including many recommended shots or vaccines). Plans that offer Medicare drug coverage are run by private insurance companies that follow rules set by Medicare.
- Original Medicare (Parts A & B) does not cover most prescription drugs. Beneficiaries must elect and buy this coverage in addition to Part A and/or Part B.
- Everyone who qualifies for Medicare and enrolls in either Part A and/or Part B is eligible for Part D Prescription Drug Coverage.
- Part D is only offered through private companies that contract with Medicare. You have two choices:
- Stand Alone Prescription Drug Plans (PDPs)
- Available through Medicare Advantage Plans (MAPDs)
- Part D covers most outpatient drugs you get from the pharmacy or through mail order. There are exceptions (eg. administered by a doctor, chemotherapy) that are covered under the other parts of Medicare.
- There are four stages of Prescription Drug Coverage:
- Annual Deductible
- Initial Coverage
- Coverage Gap
- Catastrophic Coverage
- With Part D Prescription Drug Plans (PDP), coverage and costs vary by plan and may change each year.