Monday, July 22, 2013
And My Other Guy on the Hill Said . . .
And Rob Portman's response to the same letter from me was:
Thank you for contacting me to express your views on S.740, the Medicare Drug Savings Act of 2013. I am grateful to hear from a fellow Ohioan, and I appreciate the opportunity to address your thoughtful comments.
Prior to the establishment of the Medicare Part D program in 2006, Medicare beneficiaries who were also eligible for Medicaid ("dual eligible") received drug coverage through Medicaid. When Part D was established, these individuals were automatically enrolled in its low-income subsidy (LIS) program, which covers the cost of premiums under Part D. Many LIS beneficiaries are dual eligible beneficiaries and account for 40 percent of Part D enrollees. Currently, rebates on drug costs for LIS beneficiaries are negotiated between Part D plans and drug makers, as they are for regular Part D enrollees.
As you may know, there have been proposals to apply Medicaid-style rebates to LIS beneficiaries. Drug manufacturers are currently required to pay a rebate on their sales to Medicaid enrollees. In 2010, that rate was increased from 15.1 percent to 23.1 percent of the average manufacturer price. As your letter notes, S.740, the Medicare Drug Savings Act of 2013 would also require manufacturers to pay rebates for LIS individuals.
I believe any proposal that makes significant changes to Medicare must be rigorously examined, and its effects on the federal budget, access to care, and out-of-pocket costs for America's seniors, must be carefully measured. I will keep your views in mind as the Senate considers ways to address the nation's fiscal challenges.
Thanks again for taking the time to contact my office. I am honored to represent you and the great state of Ohio in the United States Senate. For more information, visit my website at www.portman.senate.gov. Please keep in touch.
Just giving old Rob props for responding but he mostly spoke bureaucratic b.s.
He is not not really my guy on the Hill!!!
Posted by Kay Dennison at 6:36 PM