A Guide to AARP MedicareRX (Part D) Plans in 2017

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AARP MedicareRx (Part D Prescription Drug) Plans

If you’re looking to learn more about AARP® Medicare Part D plans, you’ve come to the right place. On this page, you’ll find information about the plan options, what type of coverage each plan offers, the pros and cons of these plans, and the special benefits AARP members have access to.

AARP MedicareRx Plans

AARP has partnered with UnitedHealthcare to offer prescription drug plans that help save its members money.

According to federal law, anyone who is enrolled in Part A and Part B can enroll in Part D. It helps beneficiaries pay for the costs of prescription drugs. AARP, through UnitedHealthcare, offers prescription drug plans designed to help save its members money. These plans are called AARP MedicareRx Plans1.

There are three types of plans:

  • AARP MedicareRx Walgreens: This plan includes most generic prescription drugs covered by Part D and offers savings when you fill your prescription at a Walgreens or Duane Reade pharmacy.
  • AARP MedicareRx Preferred: This plan has a more robust drug coverage than AARP MedicareRx Walgreens. It includes most generic prescription drugs and many brand name prescription drugs covered by Part D. It also offers savings when you fill your prescription at one of thousands of Preferred Retail Network pharmacies across the country.
  • AARP MedicareRx Saver PLUS: Like the MedicareRx Preferred Plan, this plan includes most generic prescription drugs and many brand name prescription drugs covered by Part D. Unlike the MedicareRx Preferred Plan, this plan has a smaller copayment and a higher deductible.

All of the drug plans also offer savings through OptumRx®, AARP’s preferred mail service pharmacy. For some plans, you can pay $0 for a 90-day supply of Tier 1 and Tier 2 medications if you use OptumRx®.

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Pros & Cons of Choosing AARP for Part D Coverage

Pros

  • Plans include a pharmacy network with popular retailers and drugstores (e.g., Walgreens, Duane Reade).
  • Through its partnership with UnitedHealthcare, AARP offers savings on prescriptions from many retail pharmacies and drugstores.
  • OptumRx® not only saves you money, but offers you access to your prescription medications without having to leave your house.

Cons

  • Since plans are offered through UnitedHealthcare, any customer service needs go through UnitedHealthcare as well.
  • When using OptumRx®, there have been some online complaints about getting prescriptions filled in a timely manner.

AARP MedicareRx Walgreens

In October 2016, UnitedHealthcare, in conjunction with AARP, announced the launch of its 2017 AARP MedicareRx Walgreens Plan2.

The plan was created to appeal to consumers who wanted the coverage of a Part D prescription plan and the convenience of shopping at their local Walgreens or Duane Reade pharmacies.

This plan includes:

  • Most generic prescription drugs covered by Part D.
  • An annual deductible of $0 for Drug Tiers 1 and 2 and $400 for Drug Tiers 3 through 5.
  • Copayments as low as $0 when you fill your prescription at a Walgreens pharmacy.
  • $0 copayment for a 90-day supply of Tier 1 medications when you use OptumRx®, AARP’s preferred mail service pharmacy.
  • $22.50 average monthly premium, which makes it one of the lowest-cost Part D plans available in the nation3.

This plan may be a good option if you are looking for a low premium and you’re able to fill your prescriptions at a Walgreens pharmacy or through OptumRx®.

AARP MedicareRx Preferred

This plan includes:

  • Most generic prescription drugs and many brand name prescription drugs covered by Part D.
  • Annual deductible of $0.
  • Copayments as low as $2 when you fill your prescription at a Preferred Retail Network pharmacy.
  • $0 copayment for a 90-day supply of Tier 1 and Tier 2 medications when you use OptumRx®, AARP’s preferred mail service pharmacy.
  • $71.66 average monthly premium.

This plan may be a good option if you are looking for robust drug coverage. However, AARP MedicareRx Preferred is projected to have one of the highest monthly premiums in 20174.

AARP MedicareRx Saver PLUS

This plan includes:

  • Most generic prescription drugs and many brand name prescription drugs covered by Part D.
  • Annual deductible of $400.
  • Copayments as low as $1 when you fill your prescription at a Preferred Retail Network pharmacy.
  • $0 copayment for a 90-day supply of Tier 1 and Tier 2 medications when you use OptumRx®, AARP’s preferred mail service pharmacy.
  • $37.34 average monthly premium.

This plan may be a good fit if you’re looking for coverage for the most common prescription drugs.

Special Plan Features and Benefits

Customer Service: AARP makes it easy to get in contact if you have any questions about its MedicareRx plans. You can call, live chat on their website, or request to meet with an agent.

Savings Through OptumRx®You could pay $0 for your prescription medication by using your plan’s preferred mail service pharmacy, OptumRx®. There’s no charge for standard delivery to addresses in the US. Even better, you don’t have to leave your house!

Additional Resources: AARP provides a variety of resources for those who have questions about Medicare or want to learn more. The website includes downloadable guides, FAQs, informational videos, Medicare worksheets, and its Plan Selector Tool, to help you choose a plan that’s right for you.

Easy-to-Use Digital and Mobile Prescription Tools: Walgreens offers all of its customers access to its easy-to-use digital pharmacy services via desktop computer and mobile app. AARP MedicareRx Walgreens Plan members can refill prescriptions, get pill reminders, receive alerts, and more.

You can learn more about AARP’s Advantage Plans and Supplement Plans by reading our AARP Review. Each year, Part D undergoes changes, and 2017 is no different. Click here to read about what changes you can expect to Part D in 2017.


Sources and Disclaimers:
1 Not all plans are available in all areas. Terms may vary.
2 Yahoo, “UnitedHealthcare Offers Compelling Medicare Products for 2017
3 UnitedHealthcare, “Introducing the AARP MedicareRx Walgreens (PDP) plan
4 Kaiser Family Foundation, “Medicare Part D: A First Look at Prescription Drug Plans in 2017

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