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Voices of Beneficiaries: Early Experiences with the Medicare Drug Benefit

The Medicare Modernization Act established a voluntary prescription drug benefit for Medicare’s elderly and disabled beneficiaries provided by private plans that is open to all beneficiaries.This paper focuses on the decision-making process and the factors that influence decisions about Medicare drug plans, as well as beneficiaries’ early experiences and future…

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Medicare Part D 2008 Data Spotlights

To better understand changes in the private plans providing drug coverage to Medicare beneficiaries under the program's Part D benefit, the Kaiser Family Foundation is issuing a series of data spotlights analyzing key elements of Medicare's private drug plans. Each spotlight will focus on a key aspect of the drug…

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Medicare Part D 2009 Data Spotlight: Ten Most Common Brand-Name Drugs

This Data Spotlight focuses on Part D plan coverage of the ten brand-name drugs that were most commonly prescribed for Medicare beneficiaries in 2006 and lack generic equivalents in 2009. Findings are based on an analysis of data for the 44 unique, national and near-national stand-alone prescription drug plans. The…

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Understanding The Effects of The Medicare Part D Coverage Gap in 2008 and 2009

This Kaiser Family Foundation study examines how the coverage gap in Medicare’s drug benefit known as the “doughnut hole” affects Medicare beneficiaries and their prescribing patterns. Based on actual claims data from 2008 and 2009, before the 2010 health reform law began to close the gap, the study finds that…

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Transitions 2006

On January 1, 2006, the six million Americans who are covered by both Medicare and Medicaid saw a change in how their prescription drugs are covered. The dual eligible population was transitioned from Medicaid into the Medicare prescription drug benefit. As a group, these beneficiaries are poorer and sicker than…

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Medicare Part D 2010 Data Spotlight: Prices for Brand-Name Drugs in the Coverage Gap

This Medicare Part D data spotlight finds prices for some commonly used brand-name drugs rising in 2010 for beneficiaries who reach the coverage gap (or “doughnut hole”), with increases since 2006 far exceeding the growth in inflation.

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Medicare and the President’s Fiscal Year 2009 Budget Proposal

Medicare and the President’s Fiscal Year 2009 Budget ProposalThis fact sheet summarizes key Medicare-related provisions in the Bush Administration’s fiscal year 2009 budget proposal, as well as additional legislation that responds to the Medicare Trustees’ “Medicare Funding Warning.” Fact Sheet (.pdf)

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Papers on Issues For People With Medicare Raised By Proposed Drug Benefit Regulations

Papers on Issues For People With Medicare Raised By Proposed Drug Benefit RegulationsThe Kaiser Family Foundation has commissioned a series of papers to explore key issues that may be of concern for Medicare beneficiaries as the new Medicare drug benefit is implemented. These papers focus on specific areas of potential…

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The Effect of Formularies and Other Cost Management Tools on Access to Medications: An Analysis of the MMA and Proposed Regulations

This paper, by John F. Hoadley, Ph.D., of the Health Policy Institute at Georgetown University, examines how formulary designs and other cost-management tools may affect Medicare beneficiaries’ access to medications through their Medicare Part D prescription drug plans. It is one in a series commissioned by the Kaiser Family Foundation…

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Prospects for Retiree Health Benefits as Medicare Drug Coverage Begins

Findings from the Kaiser/Hewitt 2005 Survey on Retiree Health BenefitsThe 2005 Kaiser/Hewitt survey of large businesses that provide retiree health benefits to their workers assesses their responses to the new Medicare drug benefit in 2006, their plans for the future, and the way these changes affect retirees. It also looks…

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in San Francisco, California.