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Over 80% of Seniors Satisfied with Medicare Part D Program. What about you?

Publish On 2009-05-05 , 4:11 PM

According to a study commissioned by Medicare Today, 84% of seniors are satisfied with the Medicare Part D prescription drug program (with 55% being Very Satisfied).  The satisfaction rate shows a 6% increase since the beginning of the Part D program.  However, the overall satisfaction in September 2008 was at a higher rate of 90%.

The study, performed in March 2009 by KRC Research, also found:
  • 88% of the seniors in the survey found that their Part D plan offers a good value.
  • 68% found that they have lower spending on prescription drugs.
  • Over 90% of the seniors felt fortunate with the "peace of mind" of Medicare Part D.
  • 30% of those surveyed are now getting medications they once skipped.
  • 8% of the survey respondents had trouble paying for their prescriptions.
  • 87% say that their Part D plan is "delivering what it said it would".
  • 68% found that they have lowered the cost of prescription drugs (80% of the people over 75 said that they have lowered their drug costs).
  • 26% feel frustrated with their prescription drug coverage.
  • 80% find that their Part D plan covers their prescribed medications (61% strongly agree).
Why is the Part D plan working?
 According to the seniors: Convenience, Smooth Operations, and Fair Prices.

The study was based on telephone calls to 1,063 seniors (age 65 and over) enrolled in Medicare.  89% of the people questioned had prescription drug coverage.  20% were enrolled in a stand-along prescription drug plan (or PDP) and 23% received drug coverage through their Medicare Advantage Plan (or MA-PD). 

What are your thoughts?


1. I hate First Health Part D -Coventry, I think it is. Not only can I get RX as cheaply without it, but Medco would never fill my RX for Premarin Cream, saying it was not authorized. Go figure.

Then I was one day late making a payment and they kicked me off the program. Now I have not prescription drug insurance. You know, if First Health is what it's like, I probably DON'T need prescription drug insurance.

I have written a letter of appeal but doubt anyone pays any attention to anything. What a sick bureaucracy we have! Get rid of them all, I say!

- by carol, 2009-06-12, 10:09 AM

2. Medicare Part D must have been passed by a bunch of legislators paid off by the pharmaceutical, and insurance companies who devised this plan. Part D stinks, and should be rescinded as soon as possible. I will still have to get my drugs from Canada.
- by Joe Brickler, 2009-06-01, 11:28 AM

3. Now!!!!!who did this survey????"Medicare Today" must have used someone who does surveys from the Pharmacutical industry. Most people are having trouble, each year, with higher premiums, changes in the formulary, higher copayments or actually changing over to a coinsurance. Yes!!!!it is better than nothing at all. But why give the seniors a small bone with a little meat on it instead of the whole steak. High income people are satisified, but low income people are suffering.
I question the research of "KRC." and will look into this fauther.
- by LEONARD BENSKY, 2009-06-01, 1:20 AM

4. I am not part of that 80% that is in love with Part D. During the donut hole I have to pay far more than I can afford on a retired teacher's pension and Social Security. I taught in MS and our salaries were so low not much was paid into Social Security or my pension. This year I won't go into the donut quite as ear;y, but not because of anything that Part D did. One of my very expensive drugs went generic. (It was not out of the goodness of the insurance company either!)
From everything I have been reading both Medicare and Social Security will go bust in just a few years; so maybe the whole discussion is mott.
- by Wanda Stegall, 2009-05-31, 11:23 PM

5. I do not feel that asking a little over 1,000 people how they feel about Part D, can give you an accurate story. I was on one prescription, Fosomax (the cost at the time was between $53-$63 per month) Merck gave it to me free. When I went on Medicare Part D, Merck no longer would give it to me. I called 3 parmacies and asked the price of Fosomax without Part D and the price went up to $93-$110.(one month supply) With Part D, the cost is a little over $50. You figure!

I now pay a monthly premium for Part D and I am not on a precription drug; but I need it in case I have a heart attack or something tomorrow (since I am 82). We all know the insurance companies are making out BIG on this as well as all the other insurances we have to pay, such as homeowners, auto, Medicare Supplemental. Yet no one talks about DENTAL--another over-priced care, that is hard to deal with.
- by A. Whittaker, 2009-05-31, 7:27 PM

6. I am complaining about the 5.8% cost of living raise. Its causing me to incurr an extra $4,000 for my prescriptions!

As a single male my Rx cost for 2009' was $59,000. (Six meds: 3 for chronic pain, 2 for terminal illness). I could live 1 to 15+ years! I hit the doughnut hole the first fill each January.

In prior years I qualified for the LOW INCOME SUBSIDY (L.I.S.) I truly appreciated the help, however the SSA raise for 2009 (5.8%) disqualifies me for the future LOW INCOME SUBSIDIES.

Previously my savings were >$4,000 each year. As of 2010 I will need to pay more than $6,500. in copays plus the part D premium.

My SSA raise increased my income to just under $17,000/yr. Its now above the $16,245.00 LIS limit. (despite the $20 exclusion fee). So I no longer qualify for the LOW INCOME SUBSIDY!

I ask myself how could I be loosing this very helpfull, "LIFE SAVING" subsidy?

My laymen research revealed that their are two different formulas used to calculate the FPL and the LIS amounts.

The Federal Poverty Level is based on Census figures. The SSA raises are based on the Cost of Living.

Despite the raise I feel that will not have any extra money to spend next year. (Not with the true cost of living).

One can only imagine how many people will unfairly fail to qualify and or loose the Low Income Subsidy becasue of the 2009' 5.8% raise.

The 5.8% raise increased my yearly income by $863.00. Now my copays will increase more than $4,000. In so many words the 5.8% raise cost me over $3,333.00!

I don't know how I will afford it. Some states like Florida have a Medicaid program called Share of Cost. In order to qualify you must go and apply then go back each month and requalify. (I'm not sure I can qualify but I think so).

I have a very bad back. My overall health will get worse as my terminal illness progresses. I don't know how I will be able to ambulate through the maze each month. I live alone. My guess is I wil give up and loose access to my life prolonging pills and simply die years ahead of time. All over a 5.8% raise.

How in the world the elected officials expect retired and or disabled people to fork over $4,000 to $6,500 in copays to get through the doughnut hole is beyond me. All I can assume is they were thinking about their own income and how easy it would be FOR THEM plop down $6,000 and go about their businness.

Throughout my life I have never paid more than $2,500 for a used car. Now I am expected to pay over $6,500 a year just to stay alive? I no longer feel as if I live in A M E R I C A.
- by Col Gro, 2009-05-10, 5:43 PM

7. Sorry, but I'm not in the 80% satisfaction statistic. When our venerable congress starts using Part D with its ridiculous doghnut hole and ever changing plans, then maybe I'll feel a little better about this terribly complex and inadequate system.
- by Gary Waymire, 2009-05-09, 9:22 PM

8. I will remain dissatisfied with Medicare Part D while our paid-for Congress prevents mdicare from negotiating reasonable pricesa with the bloated insurance/pharmeutical industry. What the plan has done is to energize me to get my doctors toprescribe generics so that I may use Walmart's $4 prescription plan. The travesty of this plan is just another example as to why this nation needs a campaign finance law that will bring sanity to the process and reduce the dependence of our congress on the largesse of the big lobbyists who remain wiling to pay %28through campaign funds a small potion of their greed to our paid-for congress
- by Bruce Murphy, 2009-05-07, 4:01 PM

9. Don't dream of counting me in your 80%. I, too, am sick and tired of having to search for a new plan whenever my current, competitively priced plan decides to double its rate and raise it co-pay beyond reasonable. Yes, I am happy with my current plan, but wonder if I will have to go shopping again when the new prices come out. I am one of the lucky ones who can take generics almost exclusively, so Humana's sharp rise from 2008 to 2009 didn't phase me -- but I did have to find a plan with a deductible in order to avoid the threats of penalties if I dropped Plan D altogether, which I was tempted to do.

No, I am not one of the happy 80%!!!!!!
- by Myra, 2009-05-07, 6:23 AM

10. I don't seem to have a lot of problems with my Plan D carrier. I am on a lot of medicine but they carry most of it on a regular basic and I don't have to get prior authorization for most.
- by Betty Hiatt, 2009-05-06, 8:12 PM

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