The Medicare Part D prescription drug benefit has helped improve the affordability of medications for people with Medicare. Yet Part D enrollees can face relatively high out-of-pocket costs because the Part D benefit does not have a hard cap on out-of-pocket spending. This analysis presents the latest data on out-of-pocket drug spending among Medicare Part D enrollees without low-income subsidies who have costs above the catastrophic coverage threshold.
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Medicare Advantage enrollment has grown rapidly over the past decade, and Medicare Advantage plans have taken on a larger role in the Medicare program. More than 22 million Medicare beneficiaries (34%) are enrolled in Medicare Advantage plans in 2019. This data note provides updated information about Medicare Advantage enrollment trends, premiums, and out-of-pocket limits. It also includes analyses of Medicare Advantage plans’ extra benefits and prior authorization requirements.
The analysis examines enrollment in Medicare Advantage plans during beneficiaries’ first year on Medicare and finds that less than one-third or 29% enrolled in these private health plans, including HMOs or PPOs. The majority of people new to Medicare are choosing traditional Medicare in the year they first go on Medicare. The study looks at how these findings vary across age, Medicaid status, states, and counties.
The Medicare Part D program provides an outpatient prescription drug benefit to older adults and people with long-term disabilities in Medicare who enroll in private plans. This analysis provides the latest data about Medicare Part D coverage and costs in 2019 and trends over time, including enrollment, premiums, cost sharing, and participation in the low-income subsidy program.
New Analysis Compares Prescription Drug Spending and Use Across Large Employer Plans, Medicare, and Medicaid
As policymakers debate how to address the high cost of prescription drugs, a new KFF analysis compares data on prescription drug spending and use across large employer plans, Medicare Part D and Medicaid, and provides context for policy discussions about different approaches to curb rising drug costs that would affect…
How Does Prescription Drug Spending and Use Compare Across Large Employer Plans, Medicare Part D, and Medicaid?
Prescription drug costs are a pressing concern for both consumers and policymakers. This analysis compares prescription drug spending and use in large private employer plans, Medicare Part D, and Medicaid, based primarily on claims data by payer, which does not account for rebates.
The analysis finds that people who switched from traditional Medicare to Medicare Advantage in 2016 had health spending in 2015 that was $1,253 less, on average, than the average spending for beneficiaries who remained in traditional Medicare (after adjusting for health risk). The findings suggest that the current payment method may systematically overestimate expected costs of Medicare Advantage enrollees. Adjusting payments to reflect Medicare Advantage enrollees’ prior use of health services could potentially lower total Medicare spending by billions of dollars over a decade.
Medicare Part D spending on insulin increased 840 percent between 2007 and 2017, far outpacing growth in the number of beneficiaries using insulin therapy, according to a new KFF analysis. The findings come at a time when the cost of prescription drugs is a major focus for policymakers in Washington,…
The price of insulin, used by people with both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes to control blood glucose levels, has come under increasing scrutiny as policymakers grapple with rising drug costs. This data note finds spending on insulin by Medicare and beneficiaries enrolled in private Part D drug plans has increased sharply between 2007 and 2017.
Poll: Nearly 1 in 4 Americans Taking Prescription Drugs Say It’s Difficult to Afford Their Medicines, including Larger Shares Among Those with Health Issues, with Low Incomes and Nearing Medicare Age
As the Trump Administration and Congress weigh policy options to address high prescription drug prices, a fourth of people taking prescription drugs (24%) and seniors taking drugs (23%) say it is difficult for them to afford their medications, the latest KFF Health Tracking Poll finds. The groups most likely to report difficulties affording their…