In less than two weeks, Medicare recipients need to register for a new prescription coverage plan. Those who wait until after the deadline will have to pay a penalty, although this does not apply to everyone.
An extension has just been granted for those who qualify for extra help through social security. Their registration deadline has been pushed back to December.
Those who have already registered, say it was easier than they thought it would be. It's overwhelming to think of the number of plans available and then to only pick one. However for a lot of beneficiaries, the change has been a breeze.
More than 29 million seniors nationwide have already registered and local officials say Alabamians have enrolled at a higher rate than any other state in the country. Thanks to education and assistance.
There are still quite a few seniors in the Wiregrass who still need to register.
"Folks who have not enrolled in a plan and think they probably should, should do that very soon because we're down to the wire," said Mark Kelly, social security administration.
Each plan option under “Part D” has been Medicare-approved, but they offer different medications and coverage.
Officials say the key is to find the plan that works best for you and if you're feeling overwhelmed there are plenty of resources for help.
Medicare beneficiary, pat kemp said, "The Company that I called explained a lot to me that I did not know and they explained what they cover. When somebody really talks to you, it's not as confusing as it sounds at first."
The deadline for most people to enroll in Medicare "Part D" is May 15.
Legislators say the change really is working and pharmacists across the nation are now able to fill hundreds of thousands more Medicare-covered prescriptions.
For assistance on which plan would best suit you, call the Medicare hotline at 1-800-MEDICARE or visit their website at http://www.medicare.gov" target="_blank">medicare.gov
You can also call the Alabama Department of Senior Services at 1-800-AGE-LINE.