There is a lot to consider when choosing a Part D plan. Monthly premium ranks high on criteria that you may consider to be important.
It’s not the only factor you should take into consideration, but with premiums ranging from under $20 to over $100 per month, the monthly premium is a big driver of annual cost.
United Healthcare offers three Part D plans for 2014 and has something for everyone. Although it’s true that the AARP MedicareRx Saver Plus Part D plan has a low premium, it may not actually be the plan with the lowest cost.
The following is an overview of AARP MedicareRx Saver Plus, who may benefit from membership and why you should consider more than just the monthly premium when choosing a Part D plan.
AARP MedicareRx Saver Plus overview
The 2013 Saver Plus plan includes:
- $19.70 monthly premium
- $310 annual deductible
- Co-payments for tier 1 starting at $1 at preferred pharmacies
- $0 co-payment for tier 1 through mail order pharmacy
- Most common drugs prescribed to people with Medicare
There are approximately 14,600 preferred pharmacies in the network of over 65,000 pharmacies. You will pay a higher co-payment when using a non-preferred pharmacy.
Of the three AARP Part D plans available through United Healthcare the Saver Plus plan is the only one that requires a deductible. When comparing plans you should factor the deductible into your over all costs.
The $310 deductible amortized over 12 months is $25.83. Assuming that you will have at least $310 in annual drug costs, adding this amortized amount to the premium results in an average monthly cost of $45.53.
Even with the required deductible, the co-payments are generally low enough to keep your total annual costs low.
If you are considering this plan you should review the plan’s Summary of Benefits and Part D formulary.
Part D formulary is key to choosing the best suited AARP Part D plan
There are three AARP branded Part D plans available through United Healthcare:
- AARP MedicareRx Saver Plus PDP
- AARP MedicareRx Preferred PDP
- AARP MedicareRx Enhanced PDP
Monthly premiums for the AARP Preferred and enhanced plans will vary by State, while the AARP Saver Plus PDP has a $19.70 monthly premium nationwide.
The real difference between plans can be found
in the formularies for each plan. Both the saver Plus and Preferred plans are considered basic formularies while the enhanced is an expanded formulary.
The Saver Plus Part D plan is most suited to someone who requires a limited amount of medications, all of which being included in the most commonly prescribed category. This plan is not suitable for someone who requires less common medications or is likely to reach the donut hole.
Before you become mesmerized by the low premium associated with the Saver Plus plan you should make sure that all your drugs are included in the plan’s formulary.
The lowest Party D premium will not result in the overall lowest annual costs if your drugs are not covered. To make the right choice, start your research by reviewing the Saver Plus formulary.