In case you haven’t heard, the Medicare open enrollment period has started, and it runs through Dec. 7. This is when Medicare enrollees can make changes to their coverage effective for the 2024 plan year, including changes to their Medicare prescription drug coverage.
It is important that you pay attention to the open enrollment period by:
- Opening and studying the Annual Notice of Changes. You should have received it by now. If not, contact your plan.
- Focusing on Section 1, Changes to Benefits and Costs for Next Year, especially the prescription drug cost changes in Section 1.3.
- Determining the impact on your costs and coverage.
- If a new plan will work better or save money, enroll in it by the end of November. Although you technically have until the open enrollment period ends on Dec. 7, experience indicates that those who wait until the very end frequently have some sort of problem.
Some new features regarding Medicare Part D drug coverage for 2024 include:
- Insulin: All insulins covered under Part D, whether injected or administered by pump, are capped at $35. To get an idea of the savings, 3.3 million beneficiaries with Part D coverage in 2020 spent $1 billion out of pocket on insulin.
- Part D vaccines: There is no copayment for vaccinations, such as shingles (known as Shingrix), hepatitis B administered to non-high-risk individuals, DTaP (diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis), RSV (respiratory syncytial virus) and others.