The increase comes after three stable years in which the average premium hovered around $30 a month.
Medicare officials say the modest increase means competition among insurers is holding down costs, even as benefits have improved for seniors with high prescription bills.
But consumers take note: the average isn't the full story. For example, last year seven of the top 10 plans raised their 2013 premiums by double-digit percentages. By shopping around, seniors helped keep the average premium paid from going up.
Consumer advocates say beneficiaries should check their plan during open enrollment, from October 15 to December 7, and look for better deals if they're not satisfied.
More Nation & World Headlines
FBI looking into the security of Hillary Clinton’s private email setup Sheriff: 2 men fire at soldiers in Mississippi; none hurt Al-Qaida calls for more lone wolf attacks in US, other countries Man arrested after report of shooting on National Mall Study: US bombing has killed hundreds of Iraqi, Syrian civilians Sandra Bland’s family sues state trooper, wants answers Debate line-up illustrates power of Fox News in GOP campaign Republicans divided on shutdown tactics to defund Planned Parenthood
Our new comment system is not supported in IE 7. Please upgrade your browser here.