Disclosure Notice of Non-Creditable Coverage

Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly version

DISCLOSURE NOTICE OF NON-CREDITABLE COVERAGE 
Important Notice From the Social Service Employees Union Local 371
Welfare Fund About Your Prescription Drug Coverage and Medicare 

Please read this notice carefully and keep it where you can find it.  This notice has information about your current prescription drug coverage with the Social Service Employees Union Local 371 Welfare Fund ("Fund") and prescription drug coverage available for people with Medicare.  It also explains the options you have under Medicare prescription drug coverage, and can help you decide whether or not you want to enroll. At the end of this notice is information about where you can get help to make decisions about your prescription drug coverage. 

  1. Medicare prescription drug coverage became available to everyone with Medicare through Medicare prescription drug plans and Medicare Advantage Plans that offer prescription drug coverage in 2006. All Medicare prescription drug plans provide at least a standard level of coverage set by Medicare. Some plans may also offer more coverage for a higher monthly premium. 
  2. It has been determined that the prescription drug coverage offered by the Fund is, on average for all plan participants, NOT expected to pay out as much as the standard Medicare prescription drug coverage will pay and is considered Non-Creditable Coverage.  This is important, because for most people enrolled in the Fund's prescription drug plan, enrolling in Medicare prescription drug coverage means you will get more assistance with drug costs than if you had prescription drug coverage exclusively through the Fund.
  3. You have decisions to make about Medicare prescription drug coverage that may affect how much you pay for that coverage, depending on if and when you enroll.  Read this notice carefully - it explains your options. 

Consider enrolling in Medicare prescription drug coverage. 

Because the prescription drug coverage you have with the Fund is on average for all plan participants, NOT expected to pay out as much as the standard Medicare prescription drug coverage will pay, you should consider enrolling in a Medicare prescription drug plan.  Individuals can enroll in a Medicare prescription drug plan when they first become eligible for Medicare and each year. This year, the open enrollment period to join a Medicare drug plan is from October 15, 2011 through December 7, 2011.  Beneficiaries leaving Fund coverage may be eligible for a Special Enrollment Period to sign up for a Medicare prescription drug plan. 
This may mean that you will have to wait to enroll in Medicare prescription drug coverage and that you may pay a higher premium (a penalty) if you join later and you will pay that higher premium as long as you have Medicare prescription drug coverage. 

If you go 63 days or longer without prescription drug coverage that is at least as good as Medicare's prescription drug coverage, your premium will go up at least 1% per month for every month that you did not have that coverage. You will have to pay this higher premium as long as you have Medicare prescription drug coverage.  For example, if you go nineteen months without coverage, your premium will always be at least 19% higher than what many other people pay.  
When deciding whether or not to enroll in a Medicare drug plan, you should compare your current Fund prescription drug coverage, including which drugs are covered, with the coverage and cost (including premiums, deductibles and co-payments) of the plans offering Medicare prescription drug coverage in your area. You should also consider the following: 

  • The Fund does not require that you join Medicare Part D for prescription drug coverage;
  • Because the prescription drug coverage you have with the Fund is on average for all plan participants, NOT expected to pay out as much as the standard Medicare prescription drug coverage will pay, you should consider enrolling in a Medicare prescription drug plan;
  • As a Fund enrollee and/or covered dependent eligible for Medicare, you will continue to receive full prescription drug benefits currently available to you under the Fund's prescription drug plan if you do not enroll in Medicare Part D;
  • If you join a Medicare prescription drug plan, you will NOT be reimbursed for the Part D premium by the Fund.

For more information about this notice or your current prescription drug coverage… 
You will receive this notice annually and may receive it at other times in the future such as before the next period you can enroll in Medicare prescription drug coverage, and if your prescription drug coverage through Fund changes.  You also may request a copy of this notice or contact the Fund office for more information.
For more information about your options under Medicare prescription drug coverage…

More detailed information about Medicare plans that offer prescription drug coverage is in the "Medicare & You" handbook from Medicare.  You'll get a copy of the handbook in the mail every year from Medicare. You may also be contacted directly by Medicare-approved prescription drug plans.  For more information about Medicare prescription drug plans: 

  • Visit www.medicare.gov
  • Call your State Health Insurance Assistance Program (see your copy of the Medicare & You handbook for their telephone number) for personalized help,
  • Call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227). TTY users should call 1-877-486-2048.

For people with limited income and resources, extra help paying for Medicare prescription drug coverage is available.  Information about this extra help is available from the Social Security Administration (SSA) online at www.socialsecurity.gov, or you call them at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778). 

October 2011

Social Service Employees Union Local 371 Welfare Fund
John Brown, Administrator
817 Broadway
New York, New York 10003
212-777-9000

Social Service Employees Union Local 371
AFSCME, AFL—CIO
817 Broadway, New York, NY 10003
©SSEU Local371|PRIVACY POLICY