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CVS lends hand with Medicare Part D enrollment

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WOONSOCKET, R.I. — With open enrollment for Medicare Part D kicking off over the weekend, CVS Pharmacy has begun offering in-store and online resources to help seniors select prescription drug coverage for the 2017 plan year.

CVS Pharmacy_Medicare Part D

CVS is providing access to information about local and national Part D plans in English and Spanish all of its approximately 9,600 pharmacy locations.

Plans also call for more than 11,000 informational events to be held in select CVS stores nationwide during the Medicare Part D open enrollment period, which launched Oct. 15 and runs to Dec. 7. Representatives from local health plans will provide Part D information to eligible patients and answer their questions.

CVS is serving up online assistance as well. The drug chain’s Health Insurance Information Center at CVS.com/Medicare offers information to help seniors find a Part D plan in their community and guides them on how to enroll. At the website, seniors enter their prescription information and ZIP code to compare plans available in their area. Patients can also find a listing of store informational insurance events in their community.

CVS noted that because Part D plans change annually and patients’ prescription needs may change, comparing plans could end up saving them hundreds of dollars. During the annual enrollment period, Medicare beneficiaries can review their prescription coverage and choose to enroll in a new plan.

“Selecting a Medicare Part D plan can be confusing and stressful for patients. That’s why it’s important they understand the many plan options available to them,” Kevin Hourican, executive vice president of pharmacy services and supply chain for CVS Health, said in a statement. “By making our pharmacists available to help patients better understand their options and offering access to health insurance information at our stores and online, we’re arming patients with the tools they need to determine which plan best meets their health care needs.”

CVS Pharmacy said it accepts most major Medicare prescription drug plans and that it’s participating in several regional and national Part D preferred pharmacy networks, which offer additional savings opportunities for Medicare beneficiaries, including no or low co-pays on generic medications.

In other Medicare Part D news, CVS Health’s SilverScript Insurance Co. subsidiary announced its new Medicare prescription drug plan options for 2017. Medicare beneficiaries in the continental United can choose from two SilverScript plans that offer a $0 deductible on formulary drugs in all five tiers, affordable co-payments and competitive premiums, the company said.

SilverScript Choice is a basic plan that offers comprehensive coverage with competitive premiums and the same affordable co-pay at every pharmacy in the network, according to SilverScript. Meanwhile, the SilverScript Plus enhanced plan provides additional coverage in “doughnut hole.” The Plus plan is designed for people who take several medications on a regular basis and are likely to reach the coverage gap during the 2017 plan year.

SilverScript noted that its Part D members have access to one of the broadest pharmacy networks, with more than 66,000 participating pharmacies across the country, including national and regional drug chains and independent pharmacies.

“Our plans are unique in that our beneficiaries will continue to have access to a $0-deductible for drugs on all tiers of the formulary, not just for lower-tier drugs that are primarily generics, and SilverScript is the only national basic plan with this feature,” stated SilverScript president Todd Meek.


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