Is a Part D Drug Plan Really Worth it?
I’m healthy. I’m fit. I still run 5Ks and mulch my own flowerbeds and trim my own bushes. It’s like I’m Tom Cruise or something. Or Brad Pitt. Or a 1989 bottle of Chardonnay. Just getting better with age.
At this point during your internal monologue, you might be wondering if a drug plan is really worth it. If you’re really at the top of your game, taking little to no medication, why would you want a $20-30 monthly premium weighing you down? Well, to cut right to the chase…
I’ve got three top-notch reasons for you:
Medicare Will Penalize You For Not Having a Drug Plan
Yup. You read that right. If you join Part D too late, it could cost you big time. In fact, for every month you are late (after your initial enrollment period), your premium will go up by 1% of the national average drug plan cost in the U.S, a penalty which continues for the rest of your life. Of course, if you never go on a drug plan, the late enrollment penalty doesn’t apply. But can you guarantee that? What happens if your doctor puts you on a medication that is out-of-this world-expensive? How will you pay for it?
Which brings me to my next reason…
The Cost of Medication is Outrageous
Right now, you might be able to get your drugs at Walmart Pharmacy for less than $4 a month. But—as I just said—life offers no guarantee for this to continue.
We’ve seen people come into our office who are on prescription drugs which cost from 40k a year all the way up to $150,000 a year. Now these people were on the right drug plan for their needs (sigh of relief), but what if they weren’t? Could they have just signed up right then and there?
Actually no, because…
You Have To Sign Up During Specific Enrollment Periods
If you miss your Initial Enrollment Period (the 7 month window starting 3 months before your 65th birthday month), you have to wait until the Annual Enrollment Period to sign up. The Annual Enrollment Period goes from October 15- December 7. It is the only time you can enroll. And the enrollment doesn’t go into effect until January 1st.
So what if you get put on this previously mentioned out-of-this-world expensive drug mid-year? And you realize you need drug coverage? It isn’t convenient, but the truth is you may have to rack up penalties and pay the high medication costs until January 1st. Talk about being weighed down!
As you review your most recent purchases, you can probably question the worth of a lot of things you bought. That life insurance policy for your gerbil? Probably not your best decision. The 3 year subscription to Fruit of the Month Magazine? I would’ve passed. A blanket with sleeves? Please.
And if you never get sick, you can throw prescription drug plans in with the lot. But herein lies the problem: no matter how strong or fit or Brad Pitt-esque you might be, health is often unpredictable.
Need more information on how to choose a drug plan? Check out this post to get you started!
Still have questions? Give our office a call and we will do what we can to help you out! 937-492-8800