Extra Help Letters from Social Security

Two million people are receiving letters from Social Security to let them know about the Extra Help program for their Part D drug coverage. This is not junk mail and it is not a scam.

Eleven million, or 30% of all Medicare Part D enrollees, are in the Extra Help program.  But many more people with low income are not getting help they probably qualify for.

To qualify for Extra Help a person’s income must be less than $16,278 (single) or $21,867 (married couple). Income sources include wages, Social Security benefits, pensions, annuities, alimony, rental income, and workers’ compensation.

For more detail on assistance programs for people on Medicare, check out a recent video I made to explain Extra Help and the Medicare Savings Program:

Help with Medicare Costs in 2016


People who get Extra Help pay only for a small co-pay for for their prescriptions:  $2.95 for generic drugs and $7.40 for brand drugs. Extra Help also covers these costs if a person goes into the “donut hole”.  In 2016, the coverage gap/donut hole begins when a beneficiary and her Part D plan have paid out a combined $3,310.

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