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Patients in Medicare Part D gap change drug purchasing, maybe use

The Office of Inspector General of the Department of Health and Human Services looked into the effects of the "coverage gap" felt by Medicare Part D prescription drug subsidy plan users without additional financial assistance after they reached the initial plan limit of $2,250. The OIG found that 98 percent of such users changed their drug purchasing behavior when they hit the gap, and 69 percent purchased a lower average amount of drugs per month while in the gap. About one third of those surveyed may have "compromised their drug regimens with changes in use."

The study found that 38 percent of participants sought other financial assistance and could not find it, while 20 percent may have been eligible for outside assistance but were not receiving any.