Today, Congressman Joe Baca (D-Rialto) announced new findings from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), that show almost half a million individuals enrolled in Medicare's prescription drug benefit have received a 50% discount on covered brand-name drugs in the Part D coverage gap, having saved them more than $260 million so far this year.
"With the enactment of real health reform, we are working to make quality, affordable health care a right for every American," said Rep. Baca. "These newly released findings from the CMS confirm what we already knew, that the health care reform law passed last Congress improves Medicare programs for our seniors and lowers out of pocket medical costs for all Americans."
Thanks to Medicare improvements that were included in the Affordable Care Act, beneficiaries who fall in the part D coverage gap, also known as the Medicare "donut hole,' automatically receive a 50% discount on their out-of-pocket costs, including covered brand name drugs. Medicare beneficiaries in the prescription drug "donut hole' have received on average a total savings of $545 so far this year.
Cheaper prescriptions are just one of the many ways the Affordable Care Act is improving Medicare for seniors. Thanks to the new law, many preventive care screenings are available free of charge. According to the CMS, at least 5.5 million Americans have already accessed at least one of these free preventive measures.
"For too long Americans everywhere have had to face the status quo of rising health costs and worsening care," concluded Rep. Baca. "Thanks to the historic health care reform legislation, more of our seniors are already receiving free services and affordable prescriptions. Unfortunately my Republican colleagues have proposed a plan to reopen the prescription drug "donut hole' and end Medicare as we know it. I will continue to fight so that we responsibly enact health care reform, and preserve Medicare for all Americans."