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Medicare Part D 2009 Data Spotlight: Low-Income Subsidy Plan Availability

Medicare Part D 2009 Data Spotlight: Low-Income Subsidy Plan Availability

This Medicare Part D Data Spotlight focuses on the availability of drug plans for beneficiaries receiving the Part D low-income subsidy in 2009 and changes since 2006. For 2009, fewer than one in five plans qualify for automatic or facilitated enrollment of low-income subsidy beneficiaries, the lowest share since the inception of the Part D benefit. These plans have monthly premiums below a benchmark amount calculated for each region, enabling low-income subsidy beneficiaries to enroll and pay no monthly premium. The number of benchmark plans for 2009 varies greatly across regions, from one in Nevada and two in Arizona to 16 in Wisconsin.

The spotlight is one in a series analyzing key aspects of the Medicare Part D drug plans that will be available to beneficiaries in 2009. These spotlights were prepared by a team of researchers at Georgetown University, NORC and the Kaiser Family Foundation.

Data Spotlight (.pdf)