MEDICARE | Prescription Drug Coverage for Rhode Island
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About Prescription Drug Coverage

What is Medicare?

Medicare is a federal health insurance program for people 65 and older and younger people who are disabled or who have end stage renal disease.

Until recently, Medicare consisted mainly of two parts:

  • Part A, which covers inpatient hospital care, skilled nursing facility, home health and hospice care. Almost all persons over the age of 65 are automatically entitled to Medicare Part A.
  • Part B, which covers physician services, outpatient hospital services, home health, durable medical equipment, laboratory, x-rays, ambulance and other services.

In an effort to reduce out-of-pocket prescription spending for Medicare beneficiaries; the Center for Medicare/Medicaid Services (CMS) developed Medicare Prescription Drug Program, also known as Part D.

What is Medicare’s New Prescription Drug Program?

Beginning January 1, 2006, the new Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage Program will be available to 41 million Medicare beneficiaries nationwide, including over 173,000 Rhode Island beneficiaries.

Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage will help you pay for your prescription drugs, so you can save money.

The Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage is an insurance, not a benefit; therefore insurance companies and other private companies will work with Medicare to offer prescription drug coverage plans. Plans may vary in what prescription drugs are covered, what you will have to pay and which pharmacies you can use. All prescription drug plans must offer a standard level of coverage determined by Medicare.

When you join a Medicare Prescription Drug Coverage Plan, it is important for you to choose the right plan that meets your prescription drug needs.

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