The information below is regarding Medicare that employers are required to send out each year to employees 65 years of age and older. There is no action needed on your part unless you would like to enroll in Medicare.
Please read this notice carefully and keep it where you can find it. This notice has information about your current prescription drug coverage with Brenau University and new prescription drug coverage for people with Medicare. It also explains the options you have under Medicare prescription drug coverage, and can help you decide whether or not you want to enroll. At the end of this notice, it also tells you where to find more information to help you make decisions about your prescription drug coverage.
- Medicare prescription drug coverage became available in 2006 to everyone with Medicare. You can get this coverage if you join a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan or join a Medicare Advantage Plan. All Medicare prescription drug plans provide at least a standard level of coverage set by Medicare. Some plans may also offer more coverage for a higher monthly premium.
- Brenau University has determined that the prescription drug coverage offered by Employee Benefit Plan is, on average for all plan participants, expected to pay out as much as the standard Medicare prescription drug coverage will pay and is considered Creditable Coverage.
Because your existing coverage is on average at least as good as standard Medicare prescription drug coverage, you can keep this coverage and not pay extra if you later decide to enroll in Medicare prescription drug coverage.
Individuals can enroll in a Medicare prescription drug plan when they first become eligible for Medicare and each year from Oct. 15 through Dec. 31. Beneficiaries leaving employer/union coverage may be eligible for a Special Enrollment Period to sign up for a Medicare prescription drug plan.
If you decide to enroll in a Medicare prescription drug plan and drop your Brenau University prescription drug coverage, be aware that you may not be able to get this coverage back.
If you drop your coverage with Brenau University and enroll in a Medicare prescription drug plan, you may not be able to get this coverage back later. You should compare your current coverage, including which drugs are covered, with the coverage and cost of the plans offering Medicare prescription drug coverage in your area.
You should also know that if you drop or lose your coverage with Brenau University, and don’t enroll in Medicare prescription drug coverage after your current coverage ends, you may pay more (a penalty) to enroll in Medicare prescription drug coverage later. If you go 63 days or longer without prescription drug coverage that is at least as good as Medicare’s prescription drug coverage, your monthly premium will go up at least 1 percent per month for every month that you did not have coverage. For example, if you go 19 months without coverage, your premium will always be at least 19 percent higher than what most other people pay. You’ll have to pay this higher premium as long as you have Medicare coverage. In addition, you may have to wait until the following November to enroll.
For more information about this notice or, your current prescription drug coverage, contact Human Resources. You may receive this notice at other times in the future such as before the next period you can enroll in Medicare prescription drug coverage, and if this coverage changes. You also may request a copy.
More detailed information about Medicare plans that offer prescription drug coverage will be available in the “Medicare & You” handbook. You’ll get a copy of the handbook in the mail from Medicare. You may also be directly contacted about Medicare prescription drug plans. You can get more information about Medicare prescription drug plans by:
• visiting www.medicare.gov for personalized help,
• calling your State Health Insurance Assistance Program (see your copy of “Medicare & You” handbook for their telephone number)
• calling 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227). TTY users should call 1-877-486-2048.
For people with limited income and resources, extra help paying for Medicare prescription drug coverage is available. Information about this extra help is available from the Social Security Administration online at www.socialsecurity.gov, or call them at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778).