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Enlisting Doctors In Part D Medicare Choices

Bruce Kesler writing at the Examiner looks at the complaints of those on the right and left and then suggests some ways to make the Medicare prescription drug benefit work better for patients.

Most partisan liberals and conservatives are in need of a reality-prescription to clarify their approach to the new Part D Medicare prescription drug benefit. This is a classic polarized left-right ideological confrontation that neglects the interests of the vast middle...

Mark McClellan, administrator for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, said investigators asked customer service reps for information that they are not required to provide, and may even be prohibited from providing.

"Medicare has never required drug plan call centers to provide detailed information about the prices of specific combinations of drugs," he said. "Despite this fact, two of GAO's five questions were on this topic."

Kesler suggests enlisting doctors in the process to better serve patients and to better utilize the program.


Comments (5)

As I am sure my fellow phar... (Below threshold)
K in RI:

As I am sure my fellow pharmacist, Kellipundit, would agree, pharmacists by far are the best healthcare professionals to help...and they have been helping since enrollment in Med D began with no reimbursement for their time.

As I am sure my fellow phar... (Below threshold)
K in RI:

As I am sure my fellow pharmacist, Kellipundit, would agree, pharmacists by far are the best healthcare professionals to help...and they have been helping since enrollment in Med D began with no reimbursement for their time.

They sure need to do someth... (Below threshold)
cirby:

They sure need to do something about streamlining the system.

My neighbor is in her early 40s, and has severe heart problems. She's also poor. The doctor tells her she needs Plavix. The Medicare people tell her she can get it, but it's going to take weeks to fill out all of the forms and jump through the hoops.

She just had another heart attack, and the emergency room visit cost more than six months of prescriptions would have...

It took me all of 20 minute... (Below threshold)
jhow66:

It took me all of 20 minutes to sign up to a plan -(wife also)-we have already saved thousands this year even if we have to pay full price the rest of the year-( which we will not). I have yet to understand what the problem with the plan is. Can someone please explain?

Now how the heck I I suppos... (Below threshold)
epador:

Now how the heck I I supposed to help the patients - I don't understand half the programs either? Just a way to pass the cost of administering the government program onto the backs of docs!

No way!

Its a drug thing and that's where the pharmacists should be able to do the best job. But will they get directly reimbursed for their time? No.




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