Medicare Part D election period began Nov. 15, ends at year end

Published 4:48 pm Wednesday, November 25, 2009

N.C. Insurance Commissioner Wayne Goodwin reminds the states 1.3 million Medicare recipients that the Medicare Part D annual election period started November 15, and will continue through the end of this year.

North Carolinians have many prescription drug plans from which to choose so many in fact, that the decision-making process can be daunting. Before you make any changes, call SHIIP at the Department of Insurance. We can help you understand your options, said Commissioner Wayne Goodwin.

The Departments SHIIP Division, or the Seniors Health Insurance Information Program, employs trained staff who can answer questions about Medicare Part D.

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Commissioner Goodwin also reminds Medicare recipients that financial assistance with Medicare Part D expenses may be available. North Carolina has more than 80,000 people on Medicare who could be receiving Medicares Low-Income Subsidy (Extra Help Program) benefits, but have not yet signed up. My staff at SHIIP can help you determine if youre eligible for this extra help and assist you in the application process.

For the coming year, North Carolina will have 47 prescription drug plans (PDPs) available to Medicare beneficiaries, and 20 companies will administer the plans.

Some existing plans also have changed their prescription formularies, monthly premiums and deductibles.

For questions about Medicare Part Ds annual election period, PDPs or other Medicare products, call SHIIP at 1-800-443-9354 or visit