Medicare Drug Premiums Won’t Rise in 2012

Barack Obama signing the Patient Protection an...

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Medicare has handed out a rare piece of good news for consumers, announcing that insurance premiums for its prescription drug programs will not increase in 2012. The agency said competition for consumer business among private insurers would keep rates stable. Many Medicare beneficiaries will actually see their overall drug costs decline, the agency added. Provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) have increased government drug payments to consumers in the program’s drug coverage gap, known as the donut hole.

In 2011, the gap begins when total drug payments–by consumers and their health plans–reach $2,840, according to the Medicare Rights Center. The ACA provides consumers a 50 percent discount on brand-name drugs and a 7 percent discount on generic drugs while they are in the donut hole. The gap ends after total costs–including the discounts–have reached $6,448. “In a standard Part D plan,” the Center says, “consumers are responsible for a $310 deductible and coinsurance of 25 percent before they reach the donut hole.” The agency said 900,000 Medicare beneficiaries have so far hit the donut hole and received drug discounts. Another 17 million Medicare users have taken advantage of free and reduced-price wellness services required by the health reform law. Medicare provides benefits to 47 million people. For more information check out the original article at Looking for a free insurance quote? Check out our homepage today at

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