Medicare’s “doughnut hole,” or coverage gap in its prescription drug program, leaves Medicare recipients holding the bag for 100% of their own drug costs and affects more than 3 million older Americans. In Texas, 28% of people in Medicare Part D fall into the gap each year. Midlife and older Americans claim the majority of chronic health conditions and often require multiple prescriptions. People shouldn’t have to go broke paying for medicines. Closing the Medicare doughnut hole is critical to lowering out-of-pocket costs for older adults. We deserve affordable health care choices, including affordable prescription drugs.
While the battle for affordable health care choices continues, there’s something you can do immediately to help ease the costly burden caused by prescriptions drugs. The AARP Doughnut Hole Calculator helps guide folks through their prescription drug options and helps them determine if or when they will fall into the coverage gap. With the calculator, they’ll be able to see a graph of their monthly spending, they can research lower cost drugs for certain conditions, and create a medication record for their doctor.
“More than three million people fall into the gap each year, and millions more nervously wonder if they might fall in,” said AARP Executive Vice President Nancy LeaMond. “For the first time, people in Medicare have a simple way to learn if they’ll fall into the doughnut hole and find ways to avoid it by switching to safe, less expensive medications.”
The calculator is powered by DestinationRx as part of a special arrangement between AARP and Medicare. The data is the same used by the Medicare Prescription Drug Plan Finder, giving users the most accurate and up-to-date drug pricing information available.