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Most and Least Expensive Medicare Drug, Advantage Plans Identified for 2015

With Medicare Open Enrollment beginning on October 15, free website presents an analysis of advantage and drug plans

Medical symbol with dollar sign for staffSeptember 19, 2014 - HealthPocket, a website that compares and ranks all health insurance plans analyzed the release of 2015 Medicare insurance data and has a slightly different conclusion on the cost of Medicare Advantage plans than does the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. CMS sees the average premium for 2015 as $32.26, while HealthPocket sees $62.69. They may both be right. They do agree the increase in cost for the 2015 plans is very small.

(See link to Centers for Medicare & Medicaid announcement in box below)

HealthPocket reports the 2015 average premium is only 2% higher than the 2014 average premium of $61.69. This amount is also 94% higher than the average of $32.26 that the government reported since the government weighted their average by projected plan enrollment rather than averaging premiums across all options available in the market.

 

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Medicare Advantage Plans Growing, Small Premium Increases for 2015

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Here is how HealthPocket sees the plans for 2015.

The least expensive Medicare Advantage plan monthly premium is still $0. However, these $0 Medicare Advantage plans appear to be in decline. The number of $0 Medicare Advantage plans in 2015 has decreased 19% since 2014.

The most expensive Medicare Advantage plan, at $347.10 a month, is the HealthPartners Freedom Ultimate with Enhanced Rx plan in the state of Minnesota. In 2014, the most expensive Medicare Advantage plan was also the HealthPartners Freedom Ultimate with Enhanced Rx in the state of Minnesota. It cost $343.30 per month, 1% lower than in 2015.

The average drug deductible for 2015 Medicare Advantage plans is $129.87. This is 94% higher than the 2014 average deductible of $66.88. As is the case for 2015 Medicare Part D plans, the maximum allowable Medicare Advantage drug deductible in 2015 is $320.

Medicare Part D Drug Plans

The average premium across all Medicare Part D drug plans in the United States for 2015 is $53.90. This is 1% lower than the 2014 average premium of $54.56. This amount is also 68% higher than the average premium of $32 that the government reported since the government weighted the 2015 premium average by anticipated plan enrollment rather than averaging premiums across all Part D plan options available in the market.

The least expensive Medicare Part D plan in 2015, at $12.60 per month, is the SilverScript Choice plan in the state of New Mexico. In 2014, the least expensive Medicare drug plan was the Humana Walmart Rx Plan in Alaska. It cost $12.50 per month, 1% lower than the least expensive plan in 2015.

The most expensive 2015 Medicare Part D plan, at $171.90 a month, is the BlueMedicare Rx-Option 2 plan in the state of Florida. In 2014, the most expensive Medicare Part D plan was also the BlueMedicare Rx-Option 2 in the state of Florida. It cost $174.70 per month, 2% higher than in 2015.

The average deductible for 2015 Medicare Part D drug plans is $157.91. This amount is 1% higher than the 2014 average deductible of $155.69. The maximum allowable Medicare Part D deductible in 2015 is $320.

The maximum possible cap on out-of-pocket costs for covered drug expenses in 2015 is $4,700 for both Part D and Medicare Advantage plans. This limit is $150 higher than the 2014 limit of $4,550. After this out-of-pocket threshold is reached, the beneficiary will be provided 'catastrophic coverage' with lower drug cost-sharing. 

Initial 2015 Medicare Part D and Medicare Advantage plan information will be made available within the Medicare Plan Comparison Tool at HealthPocket.com

HealthPocket.com is a free website that compares and ranks all health insurance plans available to an individual, family, or small business to allow consumers to make their best health plan decision and reduce their out of pocket costs. HealthPocket reports it uses only objective data from government, non-profit, and private sources that carry no conditions that might restrict the site from serving as an unbiased resource. Learn more at www.HealthPocket.com.

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