This morning, NY Times blogger Paula Span posted about recent projections that average Medicare Part D premiums will remain steady in 2013. This marks the fourth year without premium increases for beneficiaries of the prescription drug benefit. These reports demonstrate just the most recent of a long line of accomplishments for this critical program. Medicare Part D has been overwhelmingly successful in satisfying patient needs and doing it at a lesser cost than initially forecast.
- A reported 88% of seniors say they are satisfied or very satisfied with their Medicare prescription drug problem.
- 7 out of 10 seniors say they are better off now than before they had Medicare prescription drug coverage. Many report they are spending less on their medications and that they no longer need to skip or reduce the dose of their medications.
Part D Cuts Health Care Costs
- Medicare Part D not only continues to meet seniors' needs and expectations, but has come in 41 percent under its original projected cost from 2005.
- Medicare spending has dropped $1200 annually for people who previously had limited coverage but are now enrolled in Part D. That is a total estimated savings of $12 billion annually.
Thousands of Medicare beneficiaries rely on Medicare Rx coverage to provide a critical lifeline to their medications for chronic and life-threatening conditions. Medicare Part D is win-win. For America’s seniors, the Medicare prescription drug coverage means improved health outcomes. For the health care system, Part D translates to overall Medicare savings from reduced doctor and hospital visits, and avoidance of illness and other costly health problems. Striking a balance between quality and cost-effectiveness in health care can be challenging, but Medicare Part D provides an exemplary model for success.