Health care alert: Tennessee Medicare recipients living with HIV/AIDS

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KNOXVILLE – An alert rings out to all Medicare recipients living with HIV/AIDS in Tennessee. People living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) are advised to make appointments with their Medical Care Managers as soon as possible for enrollment in the new Medicare prescription drug coverage, Medicare Part D.

Enrollment began on November 15, 2005, and will continue until December 31. PWLHA’s receiving Medicare will need assistance from trained experts to guide them through the process, taking all factors into account in order to select the optimal program for each individual. Elements such as place of residence, current prescription medications, preferred health care providers, and recipient’s assets must be considered when choosing a plan.

Specialized case managers are Medical Care Managers who work to insure that PWLHA’s can clear financial hurdles essential for qualifying for the critical services they need.

Beginning in January, Tennessee will require persons receiving HIV drug assistance (ADAP) to sign up for Medicare Part D. Each person will need case management analysis of their financial status to determine what the enrollee’s responsibility may be for premiums, deductibles, and co-pay fees. Eligible enrollees may receive assistance with these costs.

Financial assistance for some or all of these costs is available for those who are eligible. Choosing a drug plan under Medicare Part D presents a combination of opportunities and challenges and Medical Care Managers can assist in making an informed decision about your choices.

For further information, contact the Tennessee AIDS Hotline at 1-800-525-AIDS (1-800-525-2437) for assistance. In the Greater Knoxville area contact Ron Brabson at 865 932-1155.