July 2, 2002  


Granger Votes for Prescription Drug Coverage for Medicare

Today, Congresswoman Kay Granger (TX-12)voted for the Medicare Modernization and Prescription Drug Act of 2002. The legislation passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 221-208.

"Our seniors should no longer be asked to choose between paying for the basic necessities of life and paying for their prescription drugs," said Congresswoman Granger. "This bill will give seniors on Medicare assistance with the cost of their prescription drugs and ensure that beneficiaries will continue to have access to high quality healthcare."

The legislation will modernize and improve every area of Medicare. Below are a few of the changes seniors will see if this legislation is enacted into law.

* The new prescription drug benefit will be available to all Medicare beneficiaries.

* Most seniors will have a $250 deductible. For costs between $250 and $1,000 the government will cover 80% of costs, and for costs from $1,000-$2,000 the federal government will pay 50% of the cost.

* In the case of a catastrophy the government will cover 100% of costs over $3,700

* Premiums for this program would be $33 a month.

* The poorest seniors, those making less than 150% of poverty, would have their premiums and costs fully subsidized.

* Seniors are guaranteed a choice of at least two prescription drug plans

* The Medicare prescription drug program will give recipients protections against adverse drug interactions, electronic prescribing to minimize errors, and pharmacy therapy management for chronic conditions

* The legislation will modernize the Medicare program by reforming irrational physician payments, and limiting regulations and paperwork

* Medicare patients will see reduced outpatient copayments

The Medicare Modernization and Prescription Drug Act will now move to the Senate for debate and approval.