Retirement Answer Man

Medicare Part D has similarities and differences to Parts A and B. On this episode of our How Does Medicare Work? series, we’ll explore Part D. We’ll also discuss what Medicare doesn’t cover. How much do you know about Medicare and how it works? Are you trying to figure out how this new type of insurance will be different from what you are used to? Make sure to listen to the whole series to help you understand the changes that enrolling in Medicare will bring to your life. 

Live a life without regret

The number one regret that people have upon death is that they say they wish they would have had the courage to live a life true to themselves. During most of our lives, we have a series of obligations that make it hard to really live a life true to ourselves. Retirement is a time when we can finally shed those obligations. What will it take for you to live a life without regrets? Think about what living a life that is true to yourself really means for you. 

What is Medicare part D?

Danielle from Boomer Benefits joins me again today to help us understand Medicare part D. Danielle has a knack for explaining the complexities of Medicare in a way that laypeople can understand.

Medicare part D is the prescription drug coverage portion of Medicare. It actually wasn’t rolled out until 2006. Since prescription drug coverage wasn’t typically covered in the 1960s, it wasn’t included in the original Medicare plans. Can you imagine what Medicare was like before Part D?

How does Medicare Part D work?

Medicare Part D is a bit different than parts A and B but it does have some similarities. It’s a voluntary plan that you have to opt into. But unlike parts A and B, you don’t enroll in part D at the Social Security office. Each state has private insurance companies that offer Medicare part D. 

Just like Medicare parts A and B, there are 4 stages to the plan. The first is the deductible. There is a deductible set by Medicare each year and the drug companies are allowed to build that into their plan how they choose as long as it is within the parameters. After your deductible has been met then you’ll move into the second stage of the plan which is the copay. Listen in to discover how Medicare part D works and why your choice in pharmacy could really affect your drug costs. 

Where are the gaps in Medicare?

Medicare isn’t perfect, there are still gaps to consider. We are often used to our employer-sponsor health plans covering dental and vision, but along with hearing, these services aren’t covered under Medicare. In a subsequent episode, we will discuss the Advantage plans that can help you bridge these gaps. 

It’s also important to remember that Medicare doesn’t pay for long-term care. To ensure that you are fully prepared, you’ll have to plan on how you’ll handle a long-term care event. Discover why it is important to review your Medicare plan each year by listening to Danielle on this episode of Retirement Answer Man.



  • [1:32] Let’s define regret


  • [5:24] Part D is a relatively new option
  • [7:12] How does Medicare Part D work?
  • [15:34] What is the total out of pocket you could pay? 
  • [19:32] Are there drug assistance programs within Medicare part D?
  • [20:33] Where are the gaps in Medicare?


  • [29:12] How to fund a special needs trust?
  • [31:31] What is the benchmark for decide when there is a gain or loss to fill your bucket?
  • [35:52] How to easily settle an estate


  • [38:35] What does being true to yourself really mean?

Resources Mentioned In This Episode

The Pie Cake episode

Long term care episodes - Start here

Boomer Benefits

Rock Retirement Club

Roger’s YouTube Channel - Roger That

BOOK - Rock Retirement  by Roger Whitney

Work with Roger

Roger’s Retirement Learning Center

Direct download: RAM432.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:00am CDT