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Medicare Part D

What is Medicare Part D? Find at least two online sources of information describing the main objectives of the program and discussing the issues challenging the implementation of the program. This information should pertain to the period before and just after the implementation of the program (January, 2006).

Medicare Part D has become one of the established programs in the field of managed care. Find an online source of information evaluating the program as it exists today. Are the concerns raised at the time of the implementation of the program still issues today? Based on your findings, evaluate the pros and cons related to the program.

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What is Medicare Part D?

A federal program to subsidize the costs of prescription drugs for Medicare beneficiaries in the United States. It helps pay for outpatient prescription drug coverage through private health plans. Individuals are eligible for prescription drug coverage under a Part D plan if they are entitled to benefits under Medicare Part A and/or enrolled in Part B. Plans are required to provide a "standard" benefit or one that is actuarially equivalent, and may offer more generous benefits. Beneficiaries can obtain the Part D drug benefit through two types of private plans: they can join a Prescription Drug Plan (PDP) for drug coverage only or they can join a Medicare Advantage plan (MA) that covers both medical services and prescription drugs.
Source: Medicare: A Primer," Kaiser Family Foundation, April 2010.

Unfortunetly provider goals are not aligned with Medicare drug coverage goals, meaning that PDP's are rewarded for focusing on low cost drugs to all beneficiaries, while providers are rewarded for quality of care sometimes involving expensive technologies. Medicare is also facing significant financial challenges. However, it ...

Solution Summary

The expert defines Medicare Part D. Two online sources of information describing the main objectives of the program is found.