Medicare Part D and VA Health Coverage benefits offer two distinct and separate prescription drug plans. Medicare Part D is a specific prescription drug program while VA Health Coverage is an entire healthcare package that includes prescription drugs. Veterans may be enrolled in both Medicare Part D and VA Health Coverage.
Medicare Part D is a voluntary program that is available to anyone who is enrolled in both Medicare Part A and Part B. Medicare Part A essentially covers hospitals and other healthcare facilities while Part B covers services and supplies (Part B does have a premium). Medicare Part D covers prescription drug needs.
There are numerous Medicare Part D plans available depending on the recipient’s specific needs, income, and region. Plans differ greatly with various premiums, copays, annual deductibles and allowable prescription drugs.
The VA Health Coverage prescription benefits are completely separate from Medicare Part D prescription drug plans. While not as far ranging as Medicare Part D plans, veteran’s benefits may also vary depending on the priority group of the veteran.
Priority groups range from one to seven with one being the highest priority. The ranking of priority groups is related to service-related disabilities, illnesses, and other criteria. The government can and has changed healthcare-related benefits provided to veterans. This could be a compelling argument for maintaining enrollment in both Medicare Part D and VA health coverage if possible.
Veterans can be enrolled in both Medicare Part D and VA Health Coverage. While the same prescription cannot be used by both programs, there may be various reasons to use one or the other for different medications. Additionally, government-instituted changes in either program could greatly impact the recipient’s availability to affordable prescription drug coverage. It may be prudent to maintain enrollment in both coverage plans.