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Editorial: Compare Medicare-D Costs Before Deadline

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Call it M-D minus 14. As in there are 14 days until seniors can go online and compare Medicare Part D prescription drug plans.

And compare they should. Because while the average premium for basic prescription drug coverage will remain $30 a month, individual plans have changes in store. In some cases big changes. Like up to 23 percent premium increases.

Avalere health checked Part D bid documents each plan submitted to Medicare. The company found “the average senior is going to benefit by carefully scrutinizing their situation, because every year the market changes,” according to President Dan Mendelson.

Those changes go beyond monthly premiums. Each year plans can change what drugs are covered and what co-pay amounts apply, for instance.

Just over 200,000 New Mexicans enrolled in a Medicare prescription drug plan last year, and 79,198 received drug benefits through their Medicare Advantage plan.

Avoid a bad New Year’s Day surprise at the pharmacy. Logging on between Oct. 15 and Dec. 7 to the online Medicare Plan Finder at Medicare.gov will allow seniors to input their individual prescription lists and find the best deal for them.

This editorial first appeared in the Albuquerque Journal. It was written by members of the editorial board and is unsigned as it represents the opinion of the newspaper rather than the writers.

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