CMS to auto enroll 1.2 million more into Part D drug program

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The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced earlier this week that it will automatically enroll an additional 1.2 million beneficiaries in the Medicare prescription drug benefit if they do not take action to enroll on their own by April 30.

CMS said in a Web site posting that it is facilitating the enrollment of various groups of beneficiaries who qualify for a low-income subsidy under the drug benefit. These include beneficiaries who were approved for the subsidy but have not signed up for a Medicare drug plan and beneficiaries who are enrolled in other federal assistance programs and likely would qualify them for the low-income subsidy. Some beneficiaries qualify for sliding-scale premium assistance

CMS plans to send letters to beneficiaries to let them know which Medicare prescription drug plan they will be enrolled in if they take no action before April 30. Beneficiaries receiving notice can still decline the enrollment before it becomes effective, according to CMS, and would not be charged a premium.

The Web site posting is available at http://www.cms.hhs.gov/apps/media/press/release.asp?Counter=1806.