Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter today announced that more than 17,000 New Hampshire seniors who fall into the Medicare Part D donut hole will begin to receive $250 checks. These rebates will be distributed by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and are made possible by the passage of health care reform. Congresswoman Shea-Porter led the effort in the House of Representatives to fully close the Medicare Part D donut hole. On January 15, 2010, Congresswoman Shea-Porter wrote a letter to House and Senate leadership urging that the final version of health care reform fully eliminate the donut hole.
"This tax-free rebate will help seniors who have fallen into the Part D donut hole afford their prescription drugs," said Congresswoman Shea-Porter. "Many senior citizens are overburdened with prescription costs and this rebate will help alleviate that burden this year."
Beginning in January 2011, seniors in the donut hole will receive a 50% discount on brand name drugs. By 2020, the donut hole will be completely closed.
In addition, HHS is implementing a new outreach campaign to protect seniors and taxpayers from scams and Medicare fraud. The Secretary of HHS and senior officials from the Administration on Aging and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services are leading efforts to give seniors much-needed information to protect themselves from scams or fraud.
"Scamming seniors is an abhorrent practice and it needs to stop," said Congresswoman Shea-Porter. "I am pleased HHS is expanding its efforts to protect one of our most vulnerable populations."