Pharmacy Times
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Despite a rocky start earlier this year, thenew Medicare Part D prescription drug programnow appears to be receiving passinggrades from seniors enrolled in the plan. A surveyof Medicare beneficiaries by the KaiserFamily Foundation found that better than 8 in 10individuals enrolled in a Part D prescription planwere satisfied with their particular plan.

A separate survey of >1500 seniors by researchers at theUniversity of California at Berkeley reported that 58% of therespondents consider their new drug coverage to be a"major benefit."

Significantly, however, the researchers also found some seriousproblems with Part D. Nearly 20% of the respondents to theKaiser survey reported encountering major problems with PartD, including being denied coverage improperly and not beingable to obtain a covered prescription at their pharmacy.

Although the proportion of enrollees who reported savingmoney exceeded that of those who pay more under Part Dby nearly 3 to 1, the ratio may change as more seniors temporarilylose Rx coverage because of the "doughnut hole,"the coverage gap in which an individual must pay all drugcosts after the total spent exceeds $2250 annually.Coverage resumes when Rx spending reaches $5100.

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