Medicaid Brand-Name Drugs When Prescribed Class Action Suit

There has been a settlement in a class-action lawsuit that will guarantee Medicaid beneficiaries to continue purchasing prescription drugs at a minimal cost when they become eligible for Medicare. The class action lawsuit, filed in 2007 by the Center of Medicare Advocacy and the National Senior Citizens Law Center in the United States District Court in San Francisco, on behalf of the 6.2 million Medicaid beneficiaries who alleged they were overcharged for drugs or even turned away from pharmacies due to processing delays of Medicare enrollment.

Medicare law states that people enrolled in both Medicaid and Medicare are to receive any assistance with purchasing prescription drugs and the beneficiaries who are eligible, will only have a co-pay as low as $1.05 to $3.10 for brand-name drugs. But, it was alleged that the beneficiaries were charged as much as $35 to $75 dollars. Evidence shows that their low-income status was not properly shared by government agencies, pharmacies and insurers.

The attorney for the plaintiffs in the class action lawsuit, claim that the delays have shortened since the Medicare prescription drug benefit took effect back in 2006. But, the average wait time currently is five to six weeks before tens of thousands of Medicaid beneficiaries who transfer to Medicare every month can begin receiving prescription drug benefits.

The settlement will make the Government change its computer system, which will allow states to submit names of new low-income Medicare beneficiaries more than once a month. Government officials will be required to process the submissions within one day. Insurers that deliver drug benefits, must also provide drugs at a minimal costs of all low-income Medicare beneficiaries who have qualified for additional assistance. Plus, if a beneficiary claims eligibility, but doesn’t have the proper documentation, or is soon to run out of medication, federal officials are required to immediately contact the state Medicaid agency to confirm their eligibility.

The settlement agreement is a great win for many of the United States most vulnerable citizens who face life-threatening delays in obtaining vital medications. Because of the class action lawsuit, it is now easier for the poorest beneficiaries to navigate Medicare Part D.

This entry was posted on Monday, April 12th, 2010 at 1:09 pm and is filed under Class Action Information, Class Action News, Drug Related, Insurance Related, Legal, Medical. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

 

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