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Pre-2010 Medicare.gov - Enter the Requested Information

Pre-2010 Basic Information for the Medicare.gov Plan search
***Archive: Below is the Pre-2010 Medicare.gov Tutorial***

Medicare would like some information about you to help with the Part D prescription drug plan process. The zip code that you enter and the questions regarding "extra help" will directly affect your plan search — see below. The other information is for Medicare’s benefit. Try to answer the questions accurately as it may provide CMS with some feedback on how they can improve their site and to also help guide you to the best Part D plan. When in doubt, choose "I don’t know."

Medicare.gov - Plan Finder Tutorial - Enter the Requested Information
We are still not sure how to best answer the "Your Health Status" question — the difference between "Excellent" and "Very Good" may depend on quite a few things, including your present mood. We have worked with many optimistic people who, as long as they could draw a breath, never considered their health anything below "fair". Anyway, you may not want to spend too much time thinking about this question.

Do you have prescription drug coverage. Do you have any other health insurance coverage
The questions "Do you have prescription drug coverage?" and "Do you have any other health insurance coverage?" are important because you may not need (or want) Part D coverage if you are receiving prescription drug coverage from another source. If you have "creditable" prescription coverage through your employer’s health plan, signing up for a Part D plan may mean that you lose all of your other health insurance coverage. When in doubt — contact your health plan administrator before enrolling in a Part D plan.

These two questions are simple "yes/ no" questions when you first enter the screen. If you select "yes", the window will expand and you will be asked for more specific information. Depending on your answers, you will be shown some disclaimers regarding possible loss of coverage (as mentioned above).

Be sure to answer the "extra help" question accurately
If you are receiving any "extra help", answer "yes" in the last section and complete the additional question. If you are eligible for the full low income subsidy, you will notice that some Medicare Part D plans have a premium of $0. These are the Part D plans in your state whose monthly premium is fully covered. If you wish to choose another Part D plan, you will be responsible for the monthly premium cost above what your state provides. (We have list of State Monthly Premium Allowances here).

What do I do about my premium penalty?
Question:  What do I do about my premium penalty?
Answer: If you did not enroll into a Medicare Part D plan during your initial eligibility and you did not have any other "creditable" prescription drug coverage, you may pay a higher monthly premium based on the number of months you were without prescription drug coverage. This penalty will be calculated by CMS and reported to your selected Part D plan and they will, in turn, contact you about the additional costs. In 2008, you will pay $0.28 or 1% more of $27.93 for each month you were without creditable prescription coverage. This value will change every year based on the average monthly Part D premium.
(See: What you pay for a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan in 2008 - Part D

Select your county
If your ZIP Code falls over more than one county, then please select the county where you have your permanent residence. This really does not affect Medicare Part D plan selection, but if you decide later to look at a Medicare Advantage plan with a prescription benefit (MA-PD), the MA-PD plans are available on a county-by-county basis.

Medicare Supplements
fill the gaps in your
Original Medicare
1. Enter Your ZIP Code:
» Medicare Supplement FAQs

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Tips & Disclaimers
  • The Medicare Advantage and Medicare Part D prescription drug plan data on our site comes directly from Medicare and is subject to change.
  • Medicare has neither reviewed nor endorsed the information on our site.
  • We provide our Q1Medicare.com site for educational purposes and strive to present unbiased and accurate information. However, Q1Medicare is not intended as a substitute for your lawyer, doctor, healthcare provider, financial advisor, or pharmacist. For more information on your Medicare coverage, please be sure to seek legal, medical, pharmaceutical, or financial advice from a licensed professional or telephone Medicare at 1-800-633-4227.
  • We are an independent education, research, and technology company. We are not affiliated with any Medicare plan, plan carrier, healthcare provider, or insurance company. We are not compensated for Medicare plan enrollments. We do not sell leads or share your personal information.
  • Benefits, formulary, pharmacy network, provider network, premium and/or co-payments/co-insurance may change on January 1 of each year. Our PDP-Compare.com and MA-Compare.com provide highlights of annual plan benefit changes.
  • The benefit information provided is a brief summary, not a complete description of benefits. For more information contact the plan.
  • Limitations, copayments, and restrictions may apply.
  • We make every effort to show all available Medicare Part D or Medicare Advantage plans in your service area. However, since our data is provided by Medicare, it is possible that this may not be a complete listing of plans available in your service area. For a complete listing please contact 1-800-MEDICARE (TTY users should call 1-877-486-2048), 24 hours a day/7 days a week or consult www.medicare.gov.
  • When enrolling in a Medicare Advantage plan, you must continue to pay your Medicare Part B premium.
  • Medicare beneficiaries with higher incomes may be required to pay both a Medicare Part B and Medicare Part D Income Related Monthly Adjustment Amount (IRMAA). Read more on IRMAA.
  • Medicare Advantage plans that include prescription drug coverage (MAPDs) are considered Medicare Part D plans and members with higher incomes may be subject to the Medicare Part D Income Related Monthly Adjustment Amount (IRMAA), just as members in stand-alone Part D plans. In certain situations, you can appeal IRMAA.
  • You must be enrolled in both Medicare Part A and Part B to enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan. Members may enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan only during specific times of the year. Contact the Medicare plan for more information.
  • If you are enrolled in a Medicare plan with Part D prescription drug coverage, you may be eligible for financial Extra Help to assist with the payment of your prescription drug premiums and drug purchases. To see if you qualify for Extra Help, call: 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227). TTY users should call 1-877-486-2048, 24 hours a day/ 7 days a week or consult www.medicare.gov; the Social Security Office at 1-800-772-1213 between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m., Monday through Friday. TTY users should call, 1-800-325-0778; or your state Medicaid Office.
  • Medicare evaluates plans based on a 5-Star rating system. Star Ratings are calculated each year and may change from one year to the next.
  • A Medicare Advantage Private Fee-for-Service plan (PFFS) is not a Medicare supplement plan. Providers who do not contract with the plan are not required to see you except in an emergency.
  • Disclaimer for Institutional Special Needs Plan (SNP): This plan is available to anyone with Medicare who meets the Skilled Nursing Facility (SNF) level of care and resides in a nursing home.
  • Disclaimer for Dual Eligible (Medicare/Medicaid) Special Needs Plan (SNP): This plan is available to anyone who has both Medical Assistance from the State and Medicare. Premiums, co-pays, co-insurance, and deductibles may vary based on the level of Extra Help you receive. Please contact the plan for further details.
  • Disclaimer for Chronic Condition Special Needs Plan (SNP): This plan is available to anyone with Medicare who has been diagnosed with the plan specific Chronic Condition.
  • Medicare MSA Plans combine a high deductible Medicare Advantage Plan and a trust or custodial savings account (as defined and/or approved by the IRS). The plan deposits money from Medicare into the account. You can use this money to pay for your health care costs, but only Medicare-covered expenses count toward your deductible. The amount deposited is usually less than your deductible amount, so you generally have to pay out-of-pocket before your coverage begins.
  • Medicare MSA Plans do not cover prescription drugs. If you join a Medicare MSA Plan, you can also join any separate (stand-alone) Medicare Part D prescription drug plan
  • There are additional restrictions to join an MSA plan, and enrollment is generally for a full calendar year unless you meet certain exceptions. Those who disenroll during the calendar year will owe a portion of the account deposit back to the plan. Contact the plan provider for additional information.
  • Medicare beneficiaries may enroll through the CMS Medicare Online Enrollment Center located at www.medicare.gov.
  • Medicare beneficiaries can file a complaint with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services by calling 1-800-MEDICARE 24 hours a day/7 days or using the medicare.gov site. Beneficiaries can appoint a representative by submitting CMS Form-1696.