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Medicare costs expected to decline with new law in place

Posted at 11:30 AM, Jan 30, 2023

Seniors on medicare will see lower costs and better access to drugs and vaccines over the next few years.

Some benefits from the Inflation Reduction Act already started on January 1. More routine vaccines are now free under Medicare Part D.

“The current deductible for Medicare Part D plans is just over $500,” said Leigh Purvis with the AARP Public Policy Institute. “So, for example, if you were told to get a shingles vaccine early in the year, and this law did not exist, you could be paying hundreds of dollars for your shingles vaccine. And now that vaccine will be free.”

Another benefit phasing in over the next few years is drug price negotiation. Before the law, medicare could not negotiate for better prescription drug prices.

”We will see the first list of drugs that Medicare is going to negotiate prices for this fall, and these are going to be very popular drugs that are used frankly by a lot of people,” Purvis said. “We could have negotiated prices for as many as 60 drugs by 2030.”

A new study in the Journal of the American Medical Associationfound those negotiations are expected to save Americans billions of dollars.

Another drug benefit Medicare Part D participants can look forward to is a $2,000 per year out-of-pocket cap, which goes into effect in 2025.