Your Health: July 9, 2013 Medicare and diabetes supplies - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Your Health: July 9, 2013 Medicare and diabetes supplies

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Birmingham, AL -

     Seniors on Medicare should be saving some money on their diabetes supplies.
     Medicare now provides a new cost-saving program that will require recipients to order their blood sugar testing supplies through a national mail-order program or a Medicare-approved pharmacy.
     According to the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services,  Before July 1, Medicare paid about $77.90 per month for 100 blood sugar test strips and lancets which are the needles used to prick the finger.
     The recipients would pay 20 percent of that cost, which averages to $15.58 a month.
    But, now, that a national mail-order program is in effect, the total cost will drop to $22.47, due to a competitive bidding process.
     That means the cost to the Medicare recipient right now is around $4.50.
     This cost-saving program kicked off on July 1st.
     This change is expected to affect 2.3 million Medicare beneficiaries who are on traditional fee-for-service Medicare.
    This change doesn't apply to people on Medicare Advantage plans, such as an HMO or PPO, according to the CMS.

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