Greg Dill is Medicare’s regional administrator for Hawai‘i, California, Nevada, Arizona and the Pacific Territories. You can always get answers to your Medicare questions by calling 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227).
While driving near Monterey, Calif., recently, I stopped at a roadside stand to buy some fresh-picked strawberries. May is high season for California strawberries and the fields were exploding with beautiful, ripe fruit.
The gentleman working the stand, Jack, asked what I do for a living. When I told him I work for Medicare, he said he was having difficulty paying for his prescription drugs. So we talked for a while about ways he might be able to reduce his drug costs.
If you have Medicare and you’re having difficulty paying for your prescription drugs, signing up for Medicare’s Part D prescription drug coverage may help, even if you have to pay a late-enrollment penalty.
There are other ways to save. Consider switching to drugs that cost less. Ask your doctor if there are generic, over-the-counter or less expensive brand-name drugs that could work just as well as the ones you’re taking now.
Switching to lower-cost drugs can save you hundreds, or possibly thousands, of dollars a year. Visit the Medicare Plan Finder at Medicare.gov/find-a-plan to get information on ways to save money in your Medicare drug plan. Or call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227) and ask our customer service representatives.
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