Today, U.S. Senator Mark Udall joined his colleagues in approving a bill adding a last package of improvements to landmark health insurance reform legislation signed by the President earlier this week. Among other things, the bill improves Medicare for seniors by closing the "donut hole" - the gap in prescription drug coverage for seniors. It enhances premium tax credits for low- and middle-class families to make health insurance premiums even more affordable. And it strengthens provisions cracking down on Medicaid and Medicare waste and fraud.
Together, the health insurance reform bill signed into law on Tuesday, along with these improvements, will expand affordable coverage to 32 million Americans and strengthen our economy by reducing health care costs for the future. The reform legislation guarantees that insurance companies will treat patients fairly regardless of gender or pre-existing condition, and it ensures that no one will ever be dropped from coverage or face bankruptcy if they get sick.
"Over the last year, we have had a robust debate over health insurance reform, right up to the last moments before we voted today," Senator Udall said. "I have heard from literally thousands of Coloradans during that time. Many of them told me powerful stories about their struggles with the health insurance system, and I have had those stories in mind throughout our debate."
"Today, we made a good bill even better - and we made history in the process," Senator Udall continued. "I can't understate the importance of closing the Medicare donut hole so that seniors will no longer have to choose between buying medicine and food. This is truly legislation that will improve the health of all Coloradans - and all Americans."