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Help With Medicare Drug Costs


August 19, 2010

There is a new benefit for Medicare beneficiaries which will help with prescription medicine costs this year. 

The “donut hole” is a coverage gap that most Medicare Part D plans have – during that period the beneficiary has to pay all costs for prescriptions.  The new law, signed by President Obama, authorizes Medicare to send beneficiaries a one-time $250 rebate check after they reach the coverage gap in 2010. 

The Explanation of Benefits notice, which your drug plan mails to you each month when you fill a prescription, will tell you how much you’ve spent on covered drugs and whether you’ve entered the coverage gap. 

It is important to note that this payment will be automatic --   there are no forms to fill out and Medicare will automatically send the $250 check, made payable to the beneficiary. You can expect to receive the check within 45 days after you reach the gap. (Individuals receiving Medicare Extra Help will not receive a rebate check.)

If you don’t get your rebate check, contact Medicare -- 1-800-MEDICARE, or http://www.medicare.gov. 

You don’t need to provide any personal information like your Medicare, Social Security, or bank account numbers to get the rebate check. Don’t give your personal information to anyone who calls you about the $250 rebate check. There continue to be many instances of fraud especially relating to Medicare Beneficiaries.  If you detect suspected fraud, contact Medicare at 1-800-MEDICARE or go to this website