AARP Part D is underwritten by United Healthcare. In January 2013 membership in AARP Medicare Rx Plans was over 4.7 million members. More people are enrolled in a Part D Plan sponsored by United Healthcare than any other company.
Being the largest does not by default make it the best. In fact given the fact that all people on Medicare have unique prescription drug needs and budgets it can’t be said that any Part D Plan is the best.
When choosing to enroll in a Medicare Part D Plan you should weigh your specific circumstances against the plan’s benefits. Following is a discussion of AARP Part D Plans pros and cons and how they may effect your Part D experience.
AARP Medicare Rx points to consider
First it should be noted that the majority of people enrolling in a Part D Plan do their homework. It makes sense that if there are more people enrolled in AARP Part D there are perceived to be more positive aspects than negative features.
- The premium is in line with the national average for Part D Plans.
- Plans do not require an annual deductible (This could change annually).
- Copays are in line with averages.
- PharmacySaver offers $2 copays on many drugs.
- Formularies include a wide range of covered drugs.
- Over 65,000 in network pharmacies.
- Lower copays for mail order drugs.
These are some of the features that members highlight as being positive. Keep in mind that none of these positive features will be of any benefit if the plan is not affordable or your medications are not included in the AARP Part D formulary.
- There are plans with lower premiums such as Humana Walmart-Preferred Rx PDP.
- Some plans include a $0 copay for tier 1 drugs.
- No $0 premium for mail order tier 1 drugs.
Plans with lower premiums are particularly attractive to people on Medicare who do not require any prescription medications. They argue that they are willing to take their chances with a lower premium even if it means paying an annual deductible if the need for medication arises.
AARP Rx Plan options
You can receive AARP branded Part D two different ways. You are able to enroll in a stand-alone Part D Plan or join a Medicare Advantage Plan like AARP MedicareComplete with drug benefits are included.
If you are joining stand-alone Part D Plan the determining factors for which plan to join will normally come down to plan premium and formulary.
AARP MedicareRx Preferred PDP is a popular choice for people who do not require some of the less popular drugs that generally treat chronic conditions. The premium will be lowest for this plan.
If you require medications not included in a basic plan you should look into AARP MedicareRx Enhanced PDP. This plan has an expanded formulary with many of the less common medications included.
Before you enroll in any Medicare drug plan you should do your home work. Save time and compare Medicare plans online.