How to Get Medicines While on Medicare?
15 Dec, 2011
A lot of people have queries regarding how to get medicines while on Medicare. Well, Medicare does not cover prescription drugs. However, you can buy a separate Medicare policy for prescription drugs. Read on to know more.
With an increase in the cost of medications, it is best to be covered for prescription drugs under Medicare. Medicare offers plans wherein patients are able to get prescription medications at affordable prices. The prescription drugs plan from Medicare is simple and easy to follow. However, some patients have queries regarding how to get medicines under these plans. For people who need to buy expensive medicines quite often, it is good to understand the Medicare plan for prescription medicines. So, mentioned below is a brief overview of how to get medicines under Medicare coverage.
Medicare Part D is a prescription drugs plan that covers brand-name as well as generic prescription medicines at participating pharmacies. All individuals with Medicare are eligible for this coverage, irrespective of their income, health condition and present prescription expenses. There are two ways of getting Medicare coverage for prescription drugs. You could join the Medicare prescription drugs plan, the Medicare advantage plan or other Medicare plans that offer coverage for prescription drugs.
The Medicare prescription drugs plan covers prescription medicines for most prescribed categories. However, it does not cover all medications. Even though a plan might not cover a specific medicine, a similar medicine which belongs to that category is made available for the patient. These alternative medicines are in the form of generic medications. This makes sure that patients who suffer from different health conditions have access to all the medications they require.
A lot of patients think that generic medications are not as safe and effective as brand name medicines. Therefore, they are hesitant about the plans that provide coverage for many generic medications. However, it is really important to know that generic medicines are the same as brand name medicines in terms of safety, quality, strengths and dosages. Both brand name medications and generic medications function the same way and provide the same results. Therefore, patients should not worry about buying generic medications instead of branded medications. Generic medications are much cheaper as compared to brand name medicines. Generic drugs help patients save a lot of money because of their cheaper rates.
Medicare prescription drug plans require prior authorization in some cases. This means that the doctor has to show that the prescribed medication is necessary for treating the patient’s condition. Step therapy is a method required for prior authorization. In this, the patients need to try less expensive medicines in the beginning. These medications have proven to be equally safe and effective as compared to the more costly brand name medicines. In case these medicines do not provide the desired results, patients can opt for other brand name medications. For this, it is necessary that the healthcare professional is of the opinion that a particular medicine is necessary for the patient’s health condition. If the healthcare professional’s request is approved, the patients are entitled to use the more expensive medicines.
The Medicare insurance plan might put a limit on the quantity of medicines that are covered over a period of time. Therefore, in case a patient is prescribed a particular medicine which needs to be taken once a day, then the plan might only cover a supply of medicines for 30 days. Patients can also get a 90 day supply of medicines if requested by way of a mail order program. It is quite easy to understand how to get medicines while on Medicare. The rules for the Medicare health plans are formed keeping the safety and convenience of patients in mind. This ensures that patients get maximum benefits from these plans at a very affordable cost.