Washington, D.C.– Monday marked the beginning of this year’s Medicare open enrollment period, during which Medicare beneficiaries can add, drop or change their prescription drug plan or choose a new health plan within the Medicare program. The enrollment period continues until Dec. 31.
Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva encouraged all Medicare recipients to explore their options to improve benefits and reduce costs, especially because the Affordable Care Act has made it possible for many people to afford more comprehensive plans than previously available. According to Medicare Beneficiary Savings and the Affordable Care Act, a recent report released by the federal Department of Health and Human Services:
– The Affordable Care Act lowers premiums and cost-sharing for those enrolled in traditional Medicare, resulting in average savings of more than $3,500 per person over the next 10 years. Beneficiaries with high prescription drug spending will save even more – up to $12,300 over the next 10 years.
– The Affordable Care Act lowers average annual premiums. By 2020, the Affordable Care Act will lower annual premiums more than $200 for beneficiaries enrolled in Fee-For-Service Medicare, compared to prior law.
– The Affordable Care Act lowers copayments and coinsurance. By 2020, the Affordable Care Act will lower coinsurance more than $200 for beneficiaries enrolled in Fee-For-Service Medicare, compared to prior law.
– The Affordable Care Act closes the “donut hole” and lowers prescription drug costs for Medicare beneficiaries.For a beneficiary with drug spending in the donut hole, estimated savings from the ACA increase from $553 in 2011 to $2,217 in 2020.
“The Affordable Care Act was a big step toward making health care more available and affordable for all Americans, and now is the time for Medicare recipients to start taking advantage of the new opportunities the law creates,” Grijalva said.