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Medicare Drug Coverage Deadline for Sign-Up Today


Today is the deadline for signing up for the Medicare drug plan for seniors and the disabled.  If you have a family member or friend who has been trying to make their way through this maze, you know what a mess it is. 

But here’s the kicker:  if you do not sign up for a plan, and you are eligible to do so, the Rubber Stamp Republican Congress and the Bush Administration in their infinite wisdom have decided that you must pay a penalty.  That’s right — seniors who are already having trouble choosing between being able to pay for their medications or groceries, and who are confused as hell by the idiocy of the multiple plans and pharmacies and drug benefits or not, and who are often at a time of their lives where reading the fine print requires two sets of glasses and still doesn’t make any sense — will have to pay a penalty, every month, for not understanding something that the government can’t even get right.

Here’s the 800 number for information from the DHHS1-800-MEDICARE  (1-800-633-4227). 

Be forewarned that, according to the GAO, more than 60% of the seniors who’ve called the helpline have been given the wrong information and are signed up for an inappropriate plan.  But hey, signing up for something at least keeps you from having to pay a penalty.

USA Today had a decent round-up article as well.

NOTE:  Sorry for the growing pains today, gang.  We’re switching servers and it’s causing a hiccup or two.  Thanks for your patience.

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Christy Hardin Smith

Christy Hardin Smith

Christy is a "recovering" attorney, who earned her undergraduate degree at Smith College, in American Studies and Government, concentrating in American Foreign Policy. She then went on to graduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania in the field of political science and international relations/security studies, before attending law school at the College of Law at West Virginia University, where she was Associate Editor of the Law Review. Christy was a partner in her own firm for several years, where she practiced in a number of areas including criminal defense, child abuse and neglect representation, domestic law, civil litigation, and she was an attorney for a small municipality, before switching hats to become a state prosecutor. Christy has extensive trial experience, and has worked for years both in and out of the court system to improve the lives of at risk children.

Email: reddhedd AT firedoglake DOT com