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Poolman: Ninety Six Percent of Eligible North Dakotans Have Prescription Drug Coverage
 
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Jim Poolman
February 12, 2007 701-328-2440


Bismarck, ND - Insurance Commissioner Jim Poolman announced today that North Dakota has the highest percentage of Medicare beneficiaries with prescription coverage in the region. The total number of Medicare eligible people in North Dakota with coverage now stands at 100,105 people.

"We have really hit the saturation point at the current level of enrollment. This means that currently, there are only around 4,000 people in the state who are eligible for Part D that have not signed up," Poolman said.

The last Medicare Part signup period ran from November 15, 2006 to December 31, 2006. During that time period, around 1,500 people signed up for Part D coverage. That is around 240 people per week.

"We think that the majority of people left to sign up are people with low income who will receive the Part D coverage for free through the Low Income Subsidy (LIS). It's important to know that low income beneficiaries can sign up for Part D at any time during the year," Poolman said.

The income and asset levels are $1,276 per month for an individual and $1,711 per month for a couple. In addition, individuals may not have more that $11,710 in assets and couples cannot have more than $23,410. These asset limits do not include one car or the value of a home. 

"While the savings are different for every person, the average annual savings is around $1,200. This is significant and goes a long way in helping people pay for their prescriptions," Poolman said.

Anyone with questions about Part D or people who think they may qualify for the Low Income Subsidy should contact the Insurance Department's Senior Health Insurance Counseling (SHIC) program at 1.888.575.6611 for assistance.

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North Dakota Insurance Department
600 E. Boulevard Ave.
Bismarck, ND 58505-0320
Phone 701.328.2440
Toll free 800.247.0560
Fax 701.328.4880

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