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Medicare 'doughnut hole' fix begins this year

By Associated Press

LAST UPDATED: 10:23 a.m. HST, Jan 15, 2011


The government's Medicare administrator for Hawaii says participants in the Medicare Part D prescription drug program who fall within the so-called "doughnut hole" will get a 50 percent discount on prescription drugs starting this year.

Regional Administrator David Sayen said the discount applies to people whose total drug costs for the year exceed $2,840 but are less than $4,550.

He said the half-off discount covers almost all brand-name prescription drugs. For generic drugs, the discount is 7 percent.

People with drug coverage through a retiree plan or who have the Part D low-income subsidy aren't eligible.

Those in the doughnut hole got a one-time check for $250 in 2010.

Sayen said this year's changes are due to national health care reform.

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