Navigation Links
First rigorous analysis defines impact of Medicare Part D
Date:1/8/2008

The most thorough study to date of the impact of the Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit (Part D) found that this benefit led to a 13.1 percent decrease in out-of-pocket expenses for patients and a 5.9 percent increase in prescription use.

Researchers from the University of Chicago Medical Center, Harvard University and Virginia Commonwealth University used data from more than 117,000 patients to assess the impact of the new prescription benefit plan. They compare out-of-pocket costs and the number of pills purchased by those who were eligible for Part D with comparable patients who were not. They also compared Part D enrollees to patients who were eligible for, but did not enroll in, Part D.

The article, released early online at the Web site of the Annals of Internal Medicine (www.annals.org) will appear in the Feb. 5, 2008, print edition of the journal.

"Despite extensive debate, it was not clear to what extent Part D would save people money or allow them to obtain drugs they might not otherwise be able to afford," said study author G. Caleb Alexander, assistant professor of medicine at the University of Chicago Medical Center. "We found that it had a modest but significant effect on both savings and drug use."

In January 2006, the federal government began to implement the Medicare Modernization Act. Part D, the largest change to Medicare since the program began, was created to improve access to prescription medicines.

Prior to and soon after implementation, researchers tried to estimate the impact of Part D. These early attempts had to rely on limited data.

For this study, the researchers were able to capture data from tens of thousands of customers who filled at least one prescription in both the 2005 and the 2006 calendar years at any retail or mail-order member of the Chicago-based Walgreens pharmacy chain.

They compared the purchases of 117,648 patients aged 66-79, who were covered by Part D, with "near elderly" control subjects aged 60-63, who were not yet eligible for the benefit. The data were adjusted for individual characteristics, socio-economics based on the subjects' residential zip codes, and secular trends in drug consumption.

They found that the program saved people who enrolled before the May 15, 2006, deadline about $6 a month and gave them, on average, an extra three to four days worth of one medicine per month. After the enrollment deadline, average savings among all eligible seniors in the study increased to about $9 a month and 14 extra days of medicine per month.

Although their sample may not be nationally representative of all beneficiaries, "our report represents one of the first analyses of the impact of Part D," said co-author Wesley Yin, PhD, an assistant professor in the Harris School of Public Policy at the University of Chicago and a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Scholar at Harvard. "It reflects the experiences of millions of Americans accounting for approximately 15 percent the market share in the United States."

Furthermore, this study differentiated between the period when subjects could enroll without penalty and enrollment in Part D plans was increasing, and the subsequent period when enrollment was stable. Analysis from this stable period, the authors said, better represents the steady-state impact of Part D on utilization and expenditures.

The authors also found that patients who enrolled early in the Part D program had higher rates of utilization and out-of-pocket costs prior to the Part D period and stood to benefit most from enrollment.

They conclude that Medicare Part D has, indeed, led to savings and increases in prescription drug use by older people. "More research is needed to see whether these effects have any influence on peoples health," Alexander said.


'/>"/>

Contact: John Easton
john.easton@uchospitals.edu
773-702-6241
University of Chicago Medical Center
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. NBTY Announces Fiscal First Quarter Preliminary Unaudited Net Sales Results
2. Sudden Cardiac Arrest Association Launches Its First Thirteen Local Chapters/Affiliates
3. BD Announces Live Webcast of First Fiscal Quarter Earnings Conference Call
4. Sharing Miracles Television Program Extends Reach Across America: First Episode Features Former White House Press Secretary Tony Snow
5. Wisconsin First State in Nation to Screen Newborns for Bubble Boy Disease
6. Corazonas Launches First and Only Cholesterol-Reducing Potato Chips
7. Put Safety First During Winter Fun
8. Methodist Mansfield Celebrates First Year
9. AspenBio Outlines Steps for FDA 510(k) Clearance of AppyScore(TM), the First Blood-Based Screen/Triage Test for Human Appendicitis
10. First reputable book on the history of the Paralympic Movement
11. Oakwood is First Healthcare System in Southeast Michigan to Post Pricing Information on Web Site
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:12/8/2016)... ... December 08, 2016 , ... Coffey Agencies, a ... and commercial clients in the northern Alabama and Georgia regions, is embarking on ... 1977, Nobis Works has built a network of support and education facilities to ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... , ... December 07, 2016 , ... DrugDev ... announcement that it is one of the early adopters completing EU-U.S. Privacy Shield Certification ... designed to provide companies on both sides of the Atlantic with a mechanism to ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... December 07, 2016 , ... ... celebrating the passage of the most comprehensive mental health systems reform legislation in ... support of the President, and the commitment of our elected officials to improving ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... York, NY (PRWEB) , ... December 07, 2016 ... ... amounts of the drug in their bodies, a researcher at the Icahn School ... journal Pediatric Research. , The study found that when young children are exposed ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... ... December 07, 2016 , ... ... of Smart Device Remote Control through a new partnership with Splashtop Inc. This ... strengthens its mobile solutions to help businesses maximize their uptime and productivity. , ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/8/2016)... , Dec. 8, 2016 Henry Schein, Inc. (Nasdaq: ... care products and services to office-based dental, animal health and ... equity investment in Marrodent, one of Poland,s ... $32 million. This transaction was announced on August 30, 2016. ... Poland since 2014, and Marrodent marks ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... Dec 8, 2016 Research and Markets has announced ... report to their offering. ... , The report provides separate comprehensive ... , and Rest of World. Annual estimates and ... historic analysis is provided for these markets. Market data and analytics are ...
(Date:12/7/2016)... Dec. 7, 2016 "Lantus (Insulin Glargine) Biosimilar Clinical Trial & ... biosimilar version of Lantus drug in clinical pipeline. Currently 5 biosimilar version ... Japan , Kenya , Czech ... , China , Slovakia , ... 2 diabetes mellitus. The patent on Lantus expired in 2014. Lantus ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: