HLC Newsletter

Survey: Without Medicare Part D Drug Coverage, Over 60 Percent of Seniors Would Cut Back or Stop Taking Medicines

WASHINGTON – At an event today to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the Medicare Part D prescription drug benefit and to discuss the lessons learned from the program, the president of the Healthcare Leadership Council said a national survey shows that Part D has made an enormous difference in the health and well-being of millions of American seniors.

At the forum sponsored by the Council for Affordable Health Coverage – which included among its participants U.S. Senator Tom Carper (D-DE) and former HHS Secretary Michael Leavitt – HLC President Mary R. Grealy said a national survey of seniors commissioned by the Medicare Today coalition found that 62 percent of those over-65 would be more likely to “cut back or stop taking my medicine” if not for Part D coverage.  

The survey of 2,274 seniors was conducted by KRC Research between July 22 and August 14, 2013.  The Healthcare Leadership Council is a coalition of chief executives of the nation’s leading healthcare companies and organizations.  Medicare Today is an alliance of national and local organizations formed by HLC to provide Medicare beneficiaries with accurate, reliable information on Medicare coverage.

Among the other highlights from the survey mentioned by Ms. Grealy at the CAHC event:

  • Beneficiaries like the Medicare Part D structure in which they can choose from competing private plans.  66 percent of respondents said having a variety of plan options is important to them.
  • During the current Part D open enrollment period, which runs from October 15 through December 7, 35 percent said they are likely to shop for new prescription drug plans with 63 percent saying they won’t look at other options during this period.  Among the non-shoppers, 92 percent said they are satisfied with their current Part D coverage.
  • Overall satisfaction with Medicare Part D is at 90 percent with virtually no variation based upon political affiliation.  92 percent of Democrats are satisfied with their Part D coverage compared to 88 percent of independents and 87 percent of Republicans.