Choosing a Part D Plan Is Confusing

For people who turn 65 in the last three months of the year, choosing a Part D plan is confusing. I am looking at Part D plans and I must compare 2014 plan information with 2015.

I am trying to help clients who have chosen to stay with Medicare, are getting a supplement, and must now choose a Part D plan.  Wellcare Classic Part D would be a good choice for the rest of 2014 at $14.20 per month with no deductible.  But this plan will cost $26.60 in 2015 and will l have a $320 deductible.

Silverscript will have a plan in 2015 for $18.70 starting in January – but my clients turning 65 in November and December can’t get this plan when their Medicare starts.  I suppose they could sign up for a plan for two months and then switch for January.  BUT ISN’T THAT STUPID???


I’ve written before that a study has shown that 80% of seniors are in the wrong Part D plan and are paying too much money. This is because their plan changed and they paid no attention.  Last summer I met a man paying over $50 per month for a Part D plan when he takes two $4 generics.  I emailed his wife recently to remind her to find him a new plan for 2015.

I really have no idea what to recommend to my clients whose Medicare begins in November and December. I don’t even want to deal with Part D because it makes me so mad.  For clients who are pretty self-sufficient (and who will not choose a plan that requires them to shop at Walmart), I refer them to 1-800-MEDICARE.   I’ve been told the call center is open 24/7 and if a person calls late in the evening, or even the middle of the night, they can get right on the phone with a rep who will help them pick a plan.

There will be 32 Part D plans available in Arizona in 2015.  Why???  Premiums range from $15 to $135.   Some evil genius must have come up with the concept of confusing Part D plans with deductibles and donut holes – and premiums that double from year-to-year.  How confusing and inefficient – especially when Medicare is actually footing the bill for $50 billion in drug costs.

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