Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Coverage Pt 4

Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Coverage Pt 4

How much does Medicare Part D cost? The actual costs of your Medicare Part D drug insurance vary based on the following factors:

  • The drugs you take and how often.
  • The independent Medicare Part D policy for prescription drugs or the Medicare Advantage policy for prescription drugs
  • If you go to a pharmacy in your policy’s network
  • If your prescription drugs are included in your Medicare Part D policy formulary.
  • If you are receiving additional costs to pay your Medicare Part D costs

Remember that the formularies can change at any time. You can be notified by your Medicare policy. One of the costs you have to consider is your monthly premium. Many Medicare Part D prescription drug policies and prescription drugs for Medicare Advantage charge a monthly premium which varies by policy, so you are entitled to pay the premium. Keep in mind that if you are enrolled in a Medicare prescription drug policy and you also participate in Medicare Part B, you will still have to pay your Medicare Part B premium.

If you are participating in a Medicare Advantage policy (with or without prescription drug insurance), you must continue to pay your Part B premium along with a premium for your Medicare Advantage insurance. In addition to your monthly premium, the cost of your Medicare Part D insurance may include:

An annual deductible: This is the amount you pay for your prescription drugs before your Medicare Prescription Drug Policy or the Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug Policy is involved in the cost. Deductibles vary by policy and it may be possible to find an amount with a $ 0 deductible.

Additional payment / coinsurance: this is the amount you pay each time you buy a prescription out of your own pocket; It is your share of the cost after Medicare has paid your share and you have met your policy’s deductible (if applicable). Generally, an additional payment is a lump sum you pay (for example, you can make a $ 10 donation when you fill a prescription), while co insurance is a percentage you can owe. These costs may vary from one policy to another and also depending on the drug levels and the level of benefits you have at the time of the prescription. Medicare prescription drug policies and Medicare Advantage prescription drug policies use different drug rates, and prescription drugs at higher prices tend to cost more than prescription drugs at lower prices.

Can I help with my Medicare prescription drug policy when my income is low? As mentioned above, Medicare offers a low-income subsidy or an additional assistance program for eligible individuals with limited income. If you are registered with Medicare and meet the income and resource requirements for the program, in some cases, you will automatically qualify for the low income subsidy. If you do not qualify automatically for the low-income subsidy, you can still request to see if you qualify for additional help from Medicare. When you qualify, you will get assistance paying for Medicare Part D, including rewards, deductibles, and co payments. Get a 2020 quote for a supplement at

Retirement advice for seniors to stay happy

Retirement advice for seniors to stay happy

Most of the working people imagine their retirement with wonderful visions of sleeping late each day, permanent vacations. But this is not the reality of all the retired people. Most of the retirement advice is focused mainly on the financial side of retirement. But there are also many “softer issues” that every person needs to consider to have a happy retirement. There is some advice on the retirement plan of a senior person that focused mainly on the way of enjoying happily the retirement but not just paying for it. There is a huge emotional aspect of leaving the workplace and workforce and it can be quite jarring. Many of the new retiree people have a difficult time to do something productive with their new free time. Only a happy retiree can give advice to enjoy the retirement time best. Plan for 2020 and get a supplement quote at

A comprehensive plan for retirement addresses health, money, family, life goals and many other social issues. For many of the people, their identity tied generally in the concept that “what you do”. This thing completely changes after retirement and for many of the retiree, the retirement time lasts for 25 to 30 years.

There is some advice for a happy retirement:

Do something you are passionate about, rather than just retiring from work. People who retire with the plan to do something that excites them are happiest in retirement. You should have a game plan to motivate and keep you busy. 65 is not just the age to take rest in the home but you can do what makes you happy, pursuing a hobby or passion. Continue to work and stay engaged is important with your regularly scheduled programs. It will give you a sense of purpose. You will get your own reason to start a new day with new hope even after retirement.

Taking care of your own health is important. Keep moving and stay fit always. You can pursue some exercise. Manage your health in a disciplined and regular manner as you manage the financial planning for health. Have a plan for your health care costs. It generally increases with time as people get older. This is best to get an insurance policy for health to compensate that huge expenses. Establishing a strong network of friends and family is the best way to keep yourself happy. A strong social connection is not the source of happiness for you but they can be your helping hand while you are in good health condition.

Medicare Part D: How is it funded?

The prescription drug program of Medicare Part D is available to all of the 58 million Americans who currently have Medicare, including those over 65 years and people below 65 with disabilities or certain conditions under which they qualify for insurance of Medicare. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, about 41 million Medicare beneficiaries enrolled in 2016 for this voluntary program. Here is a brief summary of Medicare prescription drug policies and Medicare funds for the program. When were Medicare prescription drug policies formulated? Get quotes at

Congress approved the establishment of Medicare Part D prescription drug policies under the Medicare Modernization Act of 2003, though benefits were not available until 2006. The Office of the Budget of Congress (CBO) estimated that spending on Medicare Part D in 2017 was $ 94 billion, or approximately 16% of all Medicare spending in the year. Medicare Part D, according to the CBO, is the most important expansion made to the Medicare policy since its inception in 1965 by Congress. What is the source of funding for Medicare prescription drug policies?

All Medicare benefits are paid by two US Treasury trust funds designed specifically for use by Medicare:

  • The hospital insurance trust fund (HI)
  • The supplemental medical insurance trust fund (SMI)

Each of the two trust funds has different sources of financing. HI Trust Fund receives its Medicare funds mainly from taxes on payroll paid by employees, businesses, and self-employed workers. The smallest amounts come from personal income tax, interest on trust funds and Part A premiums paid by people who do not qualify for Part A.

HI Trust Fund insures Medicare Part A benefits, including hospitalization, home care, and hospice care for inpatients. Also, it pays the administration costs associated with Medicare Part A. According to the Tax Policy Center, the HI Medicare Trust Fund had a balance of $ 205 billion in 2015 and Medicare funds of $ 275 billion for the year.

The SMI Trust Fund receives its Medicare funds from the Congress funds and premiums from the Medicare Part B and Medicare Part D prescription drug policies. The SMI Trust Fund will cover the cost of outpatient Part B outpatient care services and Medicare Part D prescription benefits.

According to the Center for Tax Policy, the SMI Trust Fund had an asset base worth $ 69.5 billion in 2015 and an inflow of $ 369 billion.

How much does the Medicare program cost per year?

According to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), national health spending in 2015 was $ 3.2 billion. Last year’s data is completely available. That’s a little less than $ 10,000 per person who lives in the United States. In total, Medicare spent $ 646.2 billion, or approximately 20% of all health care expenses in the United States. According to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), the spending on Medicare will generally increase at a rate of 7.1% per year, but most importantly, Medicare Part D spending reduced from 9% in 2015 to 5% in 2016, mainly due to the amount of expensive brand specialty drugs that are losing patent protection and are available as formulations at prices that are much lower.

Your Investment in Retirement requires you to be Flexible

Flexibility is a term that means a lot especially for those people in business. At the age of retirement or after you have retired, the first thing that comes to mind an investment. Am not saying that investing after your retirement is bad but the point am trying to drive home here is that you need to be flexible. Someone will ask what I can do with my investment so that I can be able to be flexible. There are a number of way of being flexible and enhancing flexibility of your investment after your retirement. Get a 2019 medicare advantage plan at

You must be able to discover and be open to changes in business

The world is characterized by constant economic shifts. This is what business experts refer it to as economic shifts. Your business or investment will also be affected by the dynamic shift in economic. This will affect prices, incomes and revenue. With such changes, you need to be ready, recognize and be ready for such changes in business section. Such changes are very common and normal. The changes should not give you sleepless nights as that would not be good for your retirement. Your retirement should be fun and should not be a source of strain.

Always design changes to suit the changing trends

Considering that business investment is not static, you need to be prepared in designing solutions to the changes. For example, if there is a stiff price was being initiated by your rivals, just make sure that you either adjust your product prices as well as keep your prices constant so that you operate on normal profits rather supernormal profits. It is important, also, to seek the advices of business experts so that you can have ideas on how to identify and act accordingly as far as business shifts are concerned.

Your open mindedness is very important

A closed minded person who has invested in business after a retirement may not live long with the shift in economy. This is because they are not open to changes and ideas that can help them survive the trying times in business. As a retired investor, you need to be open to advice and you should not take those advises from employees for granted. As an old senior, you need to be a good listener rather than that person who will stick to his/her own thoughts.


Most of the time, your age, gender, whether you use tobacco and your zip code factor into what you’ll pay for a Medicare Supplement plan. That’s just the “tip of the iceberg” when it comes to pricing schemes for Medicare Supplements. Standardization means that every Plan A includes the same benefits whether it’s available from a well-known insurer or a relatively unknown insurance company. Paying higher premiums won’t get you extra coverage. You’ll have to change to a plan with a different letter to change your benefits.  Help for this change can be found at

In spite of this, insurers do charge inexplicably different prices for Plan A, Plan B, etc. The only way to know you are getting the best rate for the plan you pick is to get estimates from lots of different companies. That’s where the Internet comes in handy. Several websites offer quotes on plans from different companies and frequently provide personal assistance to help you compare plans.

Medicare supplement Plans 2019 can be priced based on different models and the lowest price may not serve you as well as you’d like. That’s because you’ll have less opportunity to change plans if your health deteriorates over time. When you’re turning 65, an open enrollment period guarantees you can get the standard rate with no increases or exclusions for pre-existing health problems. Unfortunately, the cheapest plans when you’re 65 may not be best-priced plans a decade later.

Medicare Supplement Plans for 2019

The pricing model that increases premiums based on age is known as Attained Age Rated. It’s tempting because it really does offer low rates for 65-year-olds. It’s a risk because your premiums will increase not only based on inflation, but just because you inevitably grow older. By the time your premiums are higher than those of other plans based on different pricing models, your health may not allow you to move to less expensive plans. That means you either have to pay higher rates or give up supplementing Medicare and pay for a lot of health care out of your own pocket. Another pricing model is known as Issue Age Rated, but it’s not very common. Pricing is based on your age when you apply for a plan and rates don’t increase just because you get older. Rates do rise with inflation, though. These plans typically cost less if you apply at a younger age. It may not be readily apparent which pricing model has been applied to the plans available in your area.

Solve the Medicare Puzzle for Your Circumstances

Believe it or not, Medicare has become almost as complex as the tax laws of the IRS. The right to health insurance really confuses people from all walks of life.

In fact, the editor of Senior Patricia Barry’s American Association of Retired Persons said, “Humans are completely baffled by Medicare.” She should know as she researches and answers daily questions about Medicare.

What-if responses

A simple inquiry about entitlement can have multiple answers. For example, this sounds pretty straightforward – “Are you automatically notified when it’s time to apply?”

The answer – it all depends on your circumstances. Are you collecting Social Security benefits or have you been waiting for them? When you collect, you will be notified that you can apply for Medicare. Yes, Medicare and Social Security are linked but completely different claims!

The main point

Consider Medicare as a set of rules that you need to understand because they are unique. You have to adjust the rules to your own circumstances.

Knowledge of the rules is the key to solving the Medicare puzzle.

When you start solving a puzzle, you can sort the pieces by the type of the puzzle; Let’s say that you pick edge pieces and sort them by color. This is set up to simplify the solution.

The first step in solving the Medicare puzzle for you is understanding the terminology. Find a resource like that has described Medicare Part A, B, C and D and terms like Medicare Supplemental Plan and Advantage Plans. Then your resource should put the term in context using an example.

It is a great help that Medicare uses common terms such as co-payment or co-payment, PPO and HMO. As you begin to understand the terminology, you will automatically start asking questions based on your own situation. Write it down else you will most likely forget them.

About a year before most people are eligible for Medicare, insurance providers send out emails, leaflets and brochures claiming to demystify Medicare for you. In my experience, this literature seems to be helpful, but it can further confuse the problems by pointing you to a specific product. And if you have not thoroughly researched your own situation, you do not know if the advertised product is something you need.

For example, suppose you know that you do not need a Medicare supplement plan because you can use your spouse’s insurance in conjunction with Medicare. Then, supplementary plans for advertising with the literature are useless for you, at least at this time.

What about Medicaid? While Medicaid and Medicare are often mentioned together, these are separate programs. Medicaid is income-based, not age-dependent and is administered by the states. The rules of each state, who is entitled and what is covered, are different. If you believe that you can qualify for both Medicaid and Medicare, it is imperative that you ensure you understand what is covered by each program and what it does not.

Both Social Security and Medicare can introduce a number of additional financial planning issues beyond the scope of this article.


Getting an additional plan that will serve as a backup for your medical care is important. This is because most medical care packages will often not take care of everything including services and supplies referred to by your doctor. Supplemental plans therefore serve to cushion you from the hefty financial blows in matters health and are provided by private insurance companies. The insurance covers will take care of the additional service and supply costs and by doing so; significantly reduce the amount of money you pay when you visit your physician.

Get an advantage plan for 2019 at

There are times when one’s medical condition compels treatment to be sought from overseas. Shouldering this kind of expenses that constitute both transportation costs, accommodation costs and medical costs can be very difficult for one person. Having a supplemental medical care will help reduce the overall expenses as the insurance cover will take care of the medical expenses which are the most expensive part of this situation.

Medigap plans serve as a support plan. Medigap achieves this by supplementing the user’s original medical care package. For one to qualify for Medigap services, it is mandatory that you be part of an existing original medical care plan and even after the supplemental protection, one has to continue with the original medical care membership because Medigap only serves as a advantagemeaning it cannot exist alone as a cover.

Medigap is a coverage that is only available for persons above the age of 65 years in most states.  Other medical conditions like disability, the last stage of renal disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. These ailments can disqualify one from being eligible for Medigap coverage.

It is important to note that Medigap coverage plan does not extend to one’s prescription as stated by the doctor. This therefore means that one may have to consider also signing up for a stand -alone Medicare Prescription Drug Plan. Medigap as a coverage is only meant to advantagethe costs incurred in the original medical care.

It is important therefore that one conducts a good research to establish the extent to which a particular coverage will shelter you so that you do not subject to a situation blindly. Research should also be done to know which covers go hand in hand and the limitations they all have. The Medigap plan gives beneficiaries the option to also get policies from extensive sources like one’s employer and other insurers.

The Rising Popularity of Integrative Geriatric Medicine

The world of Integrative Medicine, sometimes referred to as “Alternative Medicine”, has been in practice around the world for thousands of years, but has only recently started gaining popularity in Western society. Encompassing nutrition, exercise, therapy, healing, and natural medicines, its holistic approach to health and wellness appeals to seniors in particular.

With the right provider also comes the right insurance.  Need help?

More and more doctors are starting to implement integrative approaches to medicine when it comes to their senior patients for a variety of reasons. As patients age and accumulate various age-related conditions, prescriptions for each condition begin to accumulate as well. This could cause adverse reactions for the patient from two or more drugs interacting with each other as new ones are introduced. To avoid this, doctors must fully understand all of the patient’s conditions and prescriptions, and spend a good amount of time finding the right drugs to introduce that won’t have harmful effects. Measures of alternative medicine could replace prescriptions drugs for certain conditions.


Even if not to replace prescriptions altogether, alternative medicine could be a good way to supplement for overall health in a patient. A common practice of integrative medicine is to understand the patient’s lifestyle in addition to their just their health profile. Perhaps they’re not getting enough walking in each day, or going outside enough for some good ‘ol vitamin D from sunlight. They could be eating nothing but fried and processed foods, or they’re experiencing an issue that’s causing them a lot of stress. These are all things that could cause health issues, but could also potentially be solved without the use of prescription drugs. Without a deep understanding of the patient’s overall lifestyle, a doctor may not know the underlying cause of an issue that may actually be very simple solve.


This kind of care is particularly important for seniors as our health becomes more fragile as we age. Any measure that can be taken to avoid overprescribing or potentially causing further complications should be considered. As our healthcare providers embrace the concept of integrative geriatric medicine further, more of them are willing to make recommendations for alternative methods of care and providers in those spaces. Other examples include acupuncture, herbal medicine, or nutritionists.


If you’re unsure about your insurance coverage, it’s a good idea to consider Medicare supplement plans to ensure the financial impact of utilizing these alternative care providers is minimal. Your regular doctor may have friends or colleagues they can refer you to, or you may even find that your doctor practices alternative medicine as well. Regardless, embrace your overall health and make sure you’re living a happy, healthy lifestyle.

Saving Money with Home Improvement

Each year thousands of dollars are wasted due to inefficiencies around the house. They may be too small to notice in any given day, but over time the costs add up. Follow these tips to keep your money in your pocket, where it belongs.

Saving money on insurance is important too.  Go to the following site for information on how:

Windows and insulation

Whether it’s your home’s heat during the winter, or the AC in the summer, most of your home’s energy goes straight out the window, literally. Thin glass panes or tiny gaps due to poor window construction leads to more energy being transferred outside the window. As you use more oil or electricity trying to maintain the temperature inside the house, those tiny issues are costing you more and more money. Switch to certified energy efficient windows to ensure the maximum amount of energy you’re generating stays in the house, keeping your costs as low as possible.


This goes hand in hand with the insulation in your walls and roof. Although it requires much more upfront work to insulate your house, if you’re not properly insulated the savings of switching to energy efficient windows won’t be nearly as much.

Lights and appliances

Much like your old windows, old appliances have a habit of wasting energy as well. Major appliances such as refrigerators, air conditioners, washers and dryers, dishwashers, and water heaters all have efficient models that, while likely costing more up front, will save money on your utility bill over time. These appliances utilize the minimum amount of energy possible to complete the same tasks as their inefficient counterparts.


Light bulbs are an easy change to make. Like appliances, they’re also going to cost more upfront. However, these light bulbs will last far longer so you won’t be buying them nearly as often. If you’re prone to leaving the lights on in rooms you’re not actually in, or leaving them on while you’re away from the house entirely, this is a particularly important switch for you.

Change bad habits

Start taking extra care to be conscious of any energy-wasting habits you or your family members have around the house. Turn the lights off when you’re not in that room. Don’t leave the TV on if you’re not watching it or aren’t even home. Water is particularly easy to waste, so be sure not to leave the shower running for long periods of time before you get in it and don’t take extra long showers. And don’t leave the sink on while you’re brushing your teeth.


Think of it like your Medicare supplement plans. If you invest a little upfront for the long-term benefits, when you add it all up the money you could be saving is significant.



Health Insurance alternatives for those on Medicare are very confusing. For those enrolling in Medicare for the first time, the time-line for doing this is from three months before the month one turns age 65 till the end of the third month after the month one turns age 65. It is during this period of time that one wishing to sign up for a medicare supplement plan or an advantage plan may do so without concern for medical conditions. If one tries to enroll after this open enrollment window, you may be declined acceptance into a medicare supplement plan and may have to wait till the next annual open enrollment period for an Advantage or prescription plan, which is from November 15 to Dec. 31 of each year.


If looking at Medicare supplement Plans 2019, keep in mind there is no requirement to enroll in any Advantage, Medicare Supplement or Prescription plan.   Get assistance and help at, if one elects not to enroll in a prescription plan when eligible, and you do not have another credible prescription plan, you will have to pay a 1% penalty for each month that you wait to enroll in such a prescription plan in the future. The 1% penalty is figured on the cost of a base plan. Also be aware that the penalty is payable for the rest one’s life.


The following is important for those concerned about their access to affordable Health Insurance and the most appropriate health plan. If you elect to get an Advantage Plan instead of a supplement plan, you may not be able to change and go back to a supplement plan if you develop a medical condition. The only thing that will let you go to a supplement plan is if your Advantage plan is canceled or eliminated for some reason (other than something that was your fault) or if you move out of the plans service area for your current Advantage plan. This is very important to keep in mind as an Advantage plan may become more expensive and limit some of you health insurance options. It is my recommendation to go with a supplement plan instead of an Advantage plan if at all possible. Remember that supplement plans do not include Rx coverage.

For those that just don’t have the funds for a supplement plan, there are HMO plans available in most areas now that offer zero cost options.