Medicare and the Shingles Vaccine
Does Medicare cover the Shingles Vaccine? The answer is both Yes and No.
First, let’s discuss the NO. Neither Medicare Part A or part B will cover the Shingles Vaccine.
Now, let us discuss the YES. Medicare requires that Part D plans cover the shingles vaccine. Medicare does not require you to enroll into a Part D Plan, but this is one more example of why it is a good idea to do so.
Medicare Part D, Prescription Drug Plans, are run by private insurance companies. Medicare sets minimum standards for these plans. If you’re enrolled in Part D, you shouldn’t have difficulty obtaining the shot. You may have a copayment, which can vary widely from plan to plan.
If you re enrolled in a Medicare Advantage Plan that includes a Drug Plan, you are also covered.
Remember your deductible! Check to see if you have met your yearly deductible. On 2/27/2020, I checked the GoodRx App for the price of the SHINGRIX vaccine in the Aiken, SC area. Prices ranged from $151 to $171.
If you are on a Medicare Advantage Plan, look into a plan that has a $0 deductible for medications. Some of the Prescription Drug Plans with higher premiums also have a $0 deductible. It is important to check with someone who understands the system to choose your plan wisely.
Now, where can you get the shingles vaccine? Here are two options.
- Check your local pharmacies. You need a prescription, but many pharmacies now offer clinics and vaccinations.
- Check with your physician’s office. Be sure you understand any fees associated with administering the vaccination.