The changes are occurring because the plans in which many of these beneficiaries are enrolled no more meet the subsidy program’s requirements. Beneficiaries in the subsidy, who pay out no premiums or reduced rates, automatically may be placed in a new plan for 2008 if they opted never to choose their own plan when enrolling in the program. About 2.1 million beneficiaries will be affected. Another 440,000 beneficiaries who elected to choose their own plan meeting the subsidy’s requirements will have to select another plan . Meanwhile, the true number of special needs plans, which target beneficiaries with chronic conditions such as diabetes or raised chlesterol, is increasing next yr, according to the Post-Gazette. (more…)