Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona Medicare Members *ALERT*
LOSS OF LOW-INCOME SUBSIDY (LIS) LETTERS MAILED
Loss of low-income subsidy (LIS) letters were mailed to members who no longer qualify for extra help with their Medicare prescription drug costs effective January 1, 2018. The letter included members’ new premium and cost-sharing amounts that went into effect January 1, 2018. Members who no longer have the subsidy can switch plans as part of a special enrollment period (SEP) or stay with the same plan. The letters were sent to 214 Blue MedicareRx members. A sample letter is available here.
Members who owe a late enrollment penalty (LEP) were sent letters in early December. The letter included information on the change to the member’s penalty amount, based on the change to the national base beneficiary premium.
The base beneficiary premium for 2018 is $35.02. The LEP penalty is 1 percent of this premium multiplied by the number of months the member was eligible to join a Part D plan but did not.
Approximately 699 members of Blue MedicareRx received the letter. A sample letter is available here.
If you receive questions from members about the penalty, inform them that the penalty is determined by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and not by the plan. If you feel the member may qualify for extra help paying their premium, ask them to call Customer Service, Medicare or Social Security. The Customer Service number is on the back of member ID cards. Medicare and Social Security phone numbers are in the member’s Evidence of Coverage.