As a reminder, the Medicare fall open enrollment period now begins on October 15th and ends December 7th. This means that sponsors of group health plans (including employers) that provide prescription drug coverage must distribute required creditable coverage disclosure notices to Medicare eligible participants prior to October 15th.
The Medicare Modernization Act requires entities whose policies include prescription drug coverage to notify Medicare eligible policyholders whether their prescription drug coverage is creditable coverage, which means that the coverage is expected to pay, on average, as much as the standard Medicare prescription drug coverage. For such an entity, there are two disclosure requirements:
- A written disclosure notice to all Medicare eligible individuals annually who are covered under its prescription drug plan, prior to October 15th each year and at various other times. This notice must be provided to Medicare eligible active working individuals and their dependents, Medicare eligible COBRA individuals and their dependents, Medicare eligible disabled individuals covered under the prescription drug plan, and any retirees and their dependents.
- Online disclosure to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to report the creditable coverage status of the entity’s prescription drug plan. This disclosure is also required annually, no later than 60 days from the beginning of the plan year, within 30 days after termination of a prescription drug plan, or within 30 days after any change in creditable coverage status.