Bush to WI: No Negotiation For You

Bill Scher

Last week, I talked about how the big pharmaceutical companies are working with the White House to keep the ban on Medicare negotiating for lower drug prices.

They claim negotiation won’t lead to savings for seniors. Now, the White House killed a Wisconsin program that proved otherwise.

From Wisconsin State Journal:

…the federal government rejected the state’s request to extend the popular SeniorCare program, the governor [Jim Doyle] said Wednesday … the decision likely kills the program, forcing the 104,000 people on SeniorCare to use the Medicare Part D drug plan.

Darlene Finch, 70, of Oregon, was upset by the Bush administration decision.

A retired switchboard operator, Finch said one of her rheumatoid arthritis drugs costs $1,400 a month. She said under Medicare Part D, the government would pay for the first $2,500, then she would have to pay the next $3,000 before the plan would cover additional costs. That’s money she said she can’t afford. With SeniorCare, she gets the same drug for about $15 per month,

Doyle said Wednesday that the savings for people like Finch comes after the state negotiates big price discounts with drug companies … The program saves $62.2 million through drug company discounts, the state said.

(emphasis added)

Check out our own report, showing how empowering Medicare to negotiate could save seniors and taxpayers $30 billion a year.

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