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Medicare doughnut hole not as wide as before

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in Small Business Tax,Small Business Tax Deduction Strategies

Q. I’ve been informed that I’m in the doughnut hole for Medicare. Wasn’t this eliminated? S.H., Charlotte, N.C.

A. Not entirely. Beginning in 2011, participants in the Medicare Part D drug plan program fall into the “doughnut hole” once they’ve spent $2,840 for covered drugs. Previously, you were required to pay the full cost of prescription drugs while you’re in the doughnut hole. Now you’re entitled to a 50% discount on covered brand-name prescription medications. And the cost of generic drugs in the doughnut hole is discounted 7%. The doughnut hole continues until the out-of-pocket cost reaches $4,550.

Tip: For this purpose, the out-of-pocket cost includes your annual deductible, co-payments and any co-insurance amounts.

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