Nebraska residents have a lot of options when it comes to Medicare Part D prescription drug coverage. In fact, they can choose from 23 separate plans administered by 13 different health care providers. If you’re a Nebraska resident and you’re looking to sign up for Part D coverage, you’ll first need to insure that you are currently enrolled in Original Medicare Part A and Part B.
Once that’s done, you can check the website of your preferred Part D provider for an online application. You may have to fill out an application in person if online functionality is not available. Don’t delay your application, since doing so can result in late fees, health audits, or higher monthly premium costs.
Medicare Part D vs. Medicare Advantage
Part D isn’t the only Medicare-sponsored option for prescription drug coverage. You can also opt for a Medicare Advantage plan, also known as Medicare Part C. Advantage plans are designed to replace Original Medicare Parts A and B, and some of them include additional prescription drug coverage which may fit your needs. Part D, on the other hand, is exclusively about prescription drug coverage, so it may be the better option. As always, you should research your options and consult with health care professionals to determine the optimum choice.
Be aware that some Advantage plans are incompatible with Part D. This is means that if you enroll in Part D while also being enrolled in Advantage, you may lose your Advantage coverage and subsequently default back to Original Medicare Part A and Part B. Your Advantage plan administrator will be able answer any questions relating to plan compatibility between Advantage and Part D.
When to sign up
Medicare offers three opportunities to enroll in Part D prescription drug coverage. The first is called the Initial Enrollment Period, and we highly recommend that you take advantage of it. It begins three months prior to your Original Medicare eligibility date (based on your birth month and 65th birthday). It ends four months after this date.
If you fail to register during the initial period, you can try again during the Annual Election Period between October 15th and December 7th of every calendar year. If you miss this window as well, you’ll need to contact Medicare and attempt to enroll during one of its Special Election Periods. You should avoid this situation if at all possible, since you may be subject to penalties, higher monthly premiums, or even health audits that could negatively affect your chances to obtain coverage assistance.
What are my choices?
The Medicare Part D services listed in the preceding table are provided in all Nebraska counties. Your county of residence may provide additional plans and services. Contact your local Medicare office for additional details.
Plans are subject to change as contracts are finalized.
Includes contracts/plans as of April 22, 2016. The data does not reflect information for employer-sponsored plans, Part B-only plans, or plans not offering a Part D drug benefit.