Rural enrollment in the Medicare Part D program has
historically lagged urban enrollment. As of June 2017,
the percentage of rural enrollment in Part D plans (69.8
percent), which include stand-alone prescription drug
plans (PDPs) and Medicare Advantage with Prescription
Drug (MA-PD) plans, lags urban enrollment (73.0 percent).
This lag is in spite of significant growth in the overall
percentage of Medicare beneficiaries with prescription
drug coverage through Medicare Part D plans (72.5 percent
in 2017 vs. 55.6 percent in 2008). Rural enrollees
continue to have much higher enrollment in stand-alone
PDPs than do urban enrollees, though rural participation
in MA-PD plans has almost doubled since December 2008.