May 12, 2011

Medicare Part D Updates

Change in Medicare Part D Annual Enrollment Period plus New Model Notices of Creditable and Non-Creditable Coverage

The health care reform law, enacted in 2010, changed the Medicare Part D enrollment period.  Beginning with enrollment for the 2012 year, the annual Medicare Part D annual open enrollment period is changing from November 15th through December 31st to October 15th through December 7th.  As a result of the change in annual enrollment dates, all Medicare Part D notices of creditable or non-creditable coverage must be provided prior to October 15, 2011, rather than November 15, 2011. 

CMS has issued revised model Notices of Creditable and Non-Creditable Coverage to be used on or after April 1, 2011, in both English and Spanish.  As background, the Medicare Part D Notice of Creditable or Non-creditable Coverage must be provided at least annually, prior to the Medicare Part D open enrollment period.

  • Model Individual Creditable Coverage Disclosure Notice Language (English or Spanish)
  • Model Individual Non-Creditable Coverage Disclosure Notice Language (English or Spanish)

2012 Part D Benefit Limits

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services have released the 2012 cost of living adjustments for Medicare Part D prescription drug benefits.  The following are selected modified limits relating to the standard drug benefit and the retiree drug subsidy.

Standard Benefit Design







Initial coverage limit



Out-of-pocket Threshold



Maximum Cost Sharing in Catastrophic Coverage Portion of Benefit:

  • Generic/Preferred Multi-Source Drug
  • Other






Retiree Drug Subsidy Amounts




Cost Threshold



Cost Limit







The information contained in this Benefit Beat is not intended to be legal, accounting, or other professional advice, nor are these comments directed to specific situations.

As required by U.S. Treasury rules, we inform you that, unless expressly stated otherwise, any U.S. federal tax advice contained in this Benefit Beat is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, by any person for the purpose of avoiding any penalties that may be imposed by the Internal Revenue Service.





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