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August 2018 Formulary Changes to the Top Medicare Drugs

Category: Monthly Formulary Changes
Published: Aug, 29 2018 02:08:37

The July, 2018 Medicare Part D plan formulary (or drug list) data included 104 new drug codes or NDCs representing 73 different medications.

The NDC uniquely identifies a particular manufacturer, drug-strength, and packaging combination. The NDC is often shown on your prescription bottle as an 11-digit code (see the charts below) or could be formatted as 00000-0000-00 where the first set of numbers identifies the manufacturer, the second set of number identifies the drug and strength, and the third set of numbers identifies the packaging.

This article highlights the change for some of the "top Medicare drugs", including their generic equivalents.  The generics included are Atorvastatin [Lipitor®] , Clopidogrel [Plavix®], Escitalopram [Lexapro®], Esomeprazole Sodium [Nexium®], Pioglitazone [Actos®], Risedronate Sodium [Actonel®], Quetiapine Fumarate [Seroquel®], and Valsartan-HCTZ [Diovan HCT®]. 

The changes to the number of formularies covering these medications looks as follows:

Count of 2018 Formularies Covering the Top Medicare Drugs Program-wide
    Formulary Count*
Drug Name 2013 End** 2014 End** 2015 End** 2016 End** 2017 End** 2018 Start** April May June July Aug.
ACTONEL 35 MG 36 DOSE PACK 233 248 148 25 11 13 13 13 13 13 13
ACTOS 30MG TABLET 214 75 35 23 16 16 16 16 16 16 16
ADVAIR DISKUS MIS 250/50 307 347 353 348 371 372 372 373 367 369 372
ATORVASTATIN 10 MG TABLET [Lipitor] 316 364 394 385 389 399 397 398 392 394 396
CLOPIDOGREL TAB 75MG [Plavix] 315 364 394 385 389 399 397 398 392 394 396
DIOVAN HCT 160/12.5MG TABLET 185 80 50 29 21 21 21 21 21 21 21
ESCITALOPRAM 10 MG TABLET [Lexapro] 315 363 385 385 389 399 397 398 392 394 396
ESOMEPRAZOLE SODIUM 40 MG VIAL [Nexium]   253 285 302 305 317 315 317 311 313 315
LANTUS 100U/ML VIAL 309 350 382 371 382 305 311 312 307 309 311
LEXAPRO 10MG TABLET 92 55 45 26 12 21 21 21 21 21 21
LIPITOR 10MG TABLET 68 43 30 21 20 21 21 21 21 21 21
NEXIUM 40MG CAPSULE 198 211 206 98 33 19 19 19 19 19 19
PIOGLITAZONE HCL 30 MG TABLET [Actos] 310 364 394 385 389 399 397 398 392 394 396
PLAVIX 75MG TABLET 109 48 34 20 13 16 16 16 16 16 16
QUETIAPINE FUMARATE 25 MG TAB [SEROQUEL] 316 364 394 385 389 399 397 398 392 394 396
RISEDRONATE SODIUM 35 MG TABLET [Actonel]     220 246 239 235 244 250 246 247 249
SEROQUEL 25MG TABLET 112 54 43 26 12 14 14 14 14 14 14
VALSARTAN-HCTZ 160-12.5 MG TAB [Diovan HCT] 297 343 388 376 382 395 393 394 388 390 393

*The number of formularies counts the unique formularies that offer this medication. As a note, the same formulary can be used by one or many different Medicare Part D plans. The same formulary can be used by both stand-alone prescription drug plans (PDP) and Medicare Advantage plans (MAPD).
**Ending 2013 CMS formulary dataset dated October, 2013. Ending 2014 CMS formulary dataset dated September, 2014. Ending 2015 CMS formulary dataset dated September, 2015. Ending 2016 CMS formulary dataset dated September, 2016. Ending 2017 CMS formulary dataset dated September, 2017. Starting 2018 CMS formulary dataset dated October, 2018.

You can review any Medicare plan formulary using the Q1Medicare.com FormularyBrowser at FormularyBrowser.com or compare how any medication is covered on all Medicare plans in your service area using our Q1Rx.com.

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