Don’t Wait For Open Enrollment

 In Insurance & Social Security

Talk to a Medicine Man Pharmacist About iMedicare

M

edicare open enrollment is October 15 to December 7. Millions of Americans are eligible to swap their current Medicare Part D Plan out for a new one that will cover all their prescriptions and allow them to continue filling their prescriptions at their preferred neighborhood independent pharmacy. Since choosing a Part D plan can be confusing, many seniors opt to stay with their current plan. If their plan worked out last year, why wouldn’t this year be the same? The problem is, out-of-pocket costs for a patient can vary substantially on the same plan year to year. Each year there are changes in Medicare plans, including changes in drugs and formularies, changes in costs, and more. This means last year’s perfect plan may be this year’s worst.

According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, from 2006 to 2010 only approximately 12% of all eligible patients actually switched their Medicare Part D plan. A study recently released by the American Journal of Managed Care (AMJC) concluded only 20% of Medicare enrollees would be on the cheapest available option if they remained on their current plan. This means, come the 2015 enrollment period, over 32 million patients would benefit from switching their Medicare Part D plan. Yet, if the current trend continues, only about 5 million will actually make the switch.

The Medicine Man Pharmacies are in a powerful position to help change the status quo. By using their new iMedicare software, they can quickly compare monthly costs, the Medicare Part D coverage gap (the Medicare donut hole), and other enrollment options to find plans best suited to each individual’s needs. iMedicare checks a patient’s prescriptions for restrictions and coverage. If some drugs are not covered, a Medicine Man pharmacist can check for therapeutic alternatives which may save the patient money as well. According to the AMJC study, the average patient would save over $700 a year by swapping their plans.

It is clear the role of a pharmacist has been expanding beyond its traditions. The iMedicare program is another opportunity for The Medicine Man Pharmacies to provide better patient care. The Medicine Man has been serving North Idaho since 1978. It is locally owned and operated with convenient locations in Coeur d’Alene, Hayden, Post Falls, Rathdrum, Sandpoint and Bonners Ferry. Currently, the following Medicine Man pharmacies are using the iMedicare software:

• 8093 N. Cornerstone Dr, Hayden, 208-762-9355
• 802 E. Medical Ct., Post Falls, 208-773-3566
• inside Super 1 Foods, Hayden, 208-772-3311
• inside Super 1 Foods, Coeur d’Alene, 208-765-2268

Consultations with a pharmacist are free. Don’t let Medicare Part D pick your pockets. Talk to a pharmacist at The Medicine Man Pharmacy today.

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