WHAT BENEFICIARY PAYS: Whichever costs more 5% of drug cost OR $2 for generics/$5 for brand names

WHAT THE PLAN PAYS: 95%

VALUE WHAT THE PLAN PAYS

VALUE OF DRUGS RECEIVED: Unlimited to end of calendar year.

Source: Department of Health and Human Services

Chicago Tribune/Van Tsui and Keith Claxton

- See microfilm for complete graphic.

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Coming up

Wednesday

Private managed-care companies for years have offered plans to help Medicare recipients extend their benefits and cover some medications. Some may offer more savings than the new Medicare drug benefit.

Thursday

Two state pharmaceutical-assistance programs, Senior Care and Circuit Breaker, are being changed and merged into a new program called Illinois Cares Rx to coordinate with the Medicare drug plan.

Find stories on the Medicare drug benefit online at chicagotribune.com/medicaredrugs.

READER CONNECTION Would you like to learn more about Medicare prescription drug coverage, compare plans or find out if a specific drug is covered? Go to the Medicare Web site at www.medicare.gov.

bjapsen@tribune.com