Most states to cover some Part D excluded drugs, analysis says

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New research from a strategic advisory firm may ease some providers' fears regarding excluded drugs in the Medicare Part D drug program.

An analysis by Avalere Health LLC found that all states except Tennessee will cover some of the Part D-excluded drugs for dual eligibles. A total of 48 states (Texas and Tennessee as the exceptions) will cover some or all benzodiazepines and barbiturates for dual eligibles. Avalere analyzed data from the Centers for Medicare & Medicare Services. Data did not provide information for Arizona.

Part D-excluded drugs include: benzodiazepines, barbiturates, over-the-counter drugs, weight loss/gain drugs, fertility drugs, cosmetic treatments, vitamins and smoking cessation medications.

A summary of each state's coverage decisions concerning excluded drugs is available at: http://www.cms.hhs.gov/medicarereform/states/optdrugcov.asp.