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The cost of many medicines can be expensive without insurance. With Medicare Part D coverage, paying for prescription medications can be less of a financial burden.

What Is Medicare Part D?

Medicare Part D is a voluntary benefit that provides coverage for prescription medications. When you qualify for Medicare coverage with Part A or Part B, you are also qualified for Part D. Regardless of how you received your prescription medicine prior to eligibility, you can now get them through a private Part D plan.

How Do I Get a Medicare Part D Plan?

There are two ways to join Medicare Part D: via a stand-alone plan (a prescription drug plan, or PDP) or through a Medicare Advantage plan (MA-PD).

A stand-alone prescription drug plan (Part D or a PDP) can be paired with your Original Medicare (Part A and B) coverage. You must have Part A and/or B coverage to sign up for a stand-along Part D plan. Additionally, this plan will have a separate premium from your Original Medicare coverage and comes from a private insurance company.

A Medicare Advantage plan with prescription drug coverage (MA-PD) will also come from private insurance company. These plans give you all your Part A, Part B, and Part D (prescription drug) coverage in one plan. You must have Part A and/or B coverage to sign up for a Medicare Advantage plan.

What to Consider When Enrolling in Medicare Part D

Now that we’ve answered, “What is Medicare Part D,” let us give you a few pieces of advice. Here are some things to consider when you decide to apply for Part D:

  • Choose a company that offers plans in your area. You may need to contact pharmacies in your area to see what plans are covered.
  • Make sure you enroll during specific annual enrollment periods to ensure your coverage begins when you need it.
  • Look at all of the costs associated with a plan. It doesn’t stop at the premium. It also depends on what medications you take and if they are covered, as well as any coverage restrictions in place.

Where Can I Compare Medicare Part D Plans?

You can start comparing plans with HealthMarkets. After answering a few simple questions, we can help you rank the plans available in your area with a FitScore®. The higher the FitScore, the more closely the plan matches your preferences. We can even help you start an application today!


Disclaimer: HealthMarkets’ FitScore intends to identify plans that fit your needs. You should carefully review official plan materials. 

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