For the first time, Medicare will help pay for prescription drugs. If you are already on Medicaid and Medicare, you will be automatically enrolled.
It's easy to enroll.
In October, a letter from Medicare will tell you which prescription drug plan has been chosen for you. If you are happy with that plan, you do not need to do anything.
If you aren't happy, you can change plans starting Nov. 15, 2005. Call the plan you wish to join and ask them to help you.
Your Medicare drug benefit will start Jan. 1, 2006. If Medicaid currently pays for your medicine, they will continue to do so through Dec. 31, 2005.
You decide which program is right for you.
Since you are already on Medicaid, you will be automatically enrolled into a Medicare prescription drug plan. If you decide that you do not want to take part in the Medicare drug program, you will have no drug coverage. You may not keep your Medicaid drug coverage after Jan. 1, 2006.
If you have drug coverage besides Medicaid through a retiree plan, your spouse’s work, a union, or another program, you may be able to keep that. Contact them to see what options you may have.
You also may call the Senior Health Insurance Counseling Program at 800-763-2828 for help picking a drug plan.
You will have a choice of plans.
Medicare will give you a choice of at least two plans. These will be offered by private companies approved by Medicare.
You may not have to pay a monthly premium for this program.
The monthly premium will be paid for you.
You do not have to make any decisions right away.
Medicare will send you more information about the prescription drug program before you need to choose a plan. You have until Nov. 15 before you have to choose, so you still have time to get answers to your questions.
Medicare is always there to answer your questions.
To learn more about any part of the Medicare prescription drug program or any Medicare topic, call Medicare at 800-633-4227 (800-MEDICARE). The phone lines are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. You can also go to the Medicare Web site.