Laxatives can be effective in preventing or relieving constipation. Constipation can be caused by a number of factors, including poor diet, illness, and certain medications. There are several types of over-the-counter laxatives available on the market. Medicare prescription drug coverage does not usually cover over-the-counter medications, but may help pay for laxatives under certain circumstances.

If you have tried an over-the-counter laxative and are still experiencing constipation, you may want to discuss your concerns with your physician. You may have an underlying medical condition, or you may be experiencing a side effect from another medication you are taking. Your doctor may choose to prescribe a laxative based on your specific circumstances and health history.

Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Coverage

Medicare Part A (Hospital Insurance) and Part B (Medical Insurance) cover many medical expenses, but they do not include prescription drug benefits. Many people with Original Medicare choose to enroll in a stand-alone Prescription Drug Plan (PDP) to get help paying for medications ordered by your physician. You may pay a premium, yearly deductible, copayments and coinsurance for Part D coverage. Costs vary between PDPs, and in 2019, deductibles may not be higher than $415.

Some Medicare recipients choose to get their Part A and Part B coverage through a Medicare Advantage plan. MA plans are offered by private insurance companies contracted with Medicare. They are required to provide at least the same benefits as Original Medicare, but many offer additional coverage, including prescription drug coverage. Costs vary between Medicare Advantage plans with prescription drug coverage (MA-PDs) and each drug plan will have its own formulary, or list of covered drugs, as well. Most drug plans will include a laxative that may be prescribed by a physician to relieve constipation.

Related articles:

Your Guide to Understanding Medicare Parts A-D

Medicare Part C