Distraction Alert ~ President’s Drug Proposal is “Much Ado About Nothing”

Distraction Alert ~ President’s Drug Proposal is “Much Ado About Nothing”

With the election just days away, the president announced a weak proposal to decrease Medicare drug costs. While he claims it will “revolutionize” Medicare drug prices, it in fact would only slowly address the lowering of drug prices for a very small portion of drugs covered under Medicare Part B, NOT the drugs covered under the Medicare Part D prescription drug benefit. As the vast majority of beneficiaries’ drug costs and the drugs they use and receive through their pharmacy or mail order are through the Part D benefit, this minimal proposal is really “much ado about nothing” and mostly a distraction before people head to the polls next week.

Our partners at Center for Medicare Advocacy (CMA) recently released an alert on this “distraction proposal”. We join them in requesting the president work with Congress to deliver on his campaign promise to ensure Medicare can negotiate drug prices in Part D, the overall Medicare prescription drug program. Part D drug costs are one of the fastest rising health care expenses for beneficiaries and Medicare. The president has taken no action to fulfill his promise and hence current Medicare law still prohibits any negotiations for lowering Part D drug prices.

Here are some important things you can do, as outlined in the alert:

#SaveMedicareNow 

Our blogger Karen J. Fletcher is CHA's publications consultant. She provides technical expertise, writing and research on Medicare, health disparities and other health care issues. With a Masters in Public Health from UC Berkeley, she serves in health advocacy as a trainer and consultant. See her current articles.