Coalition, Experts To Hold Wed. Press Conference, Rally

Washington, DC:  Leaders of citizen organizations and health experts will hold a press conference call on Wednesday at 10 am to discuss the many reasons why the GOP prescription drug legislation, just unveiled, has provoked strong opposition from health care experts – and from many of the same citizen groups that originally placed the demand for a prescription drug benefit on the political agenda.

Despite AARP’s endorsement, a diverse coalition of groups around the country is coming out in opposition to the plan.  Coalition leaders and Medicare experts say that the bill produced by conferees would dismantle Medicare.

A grassroots coalition is mobilizing millions around the nation to oppose the plan now before Congress.  Local leaders are releasing a new reports from the Institute for America’s Future and from Consumers Union that describe the ways in which the Republican plan will:

  1. Lock in skyrocketing prescription drug prices;
  2. Subsidize HMOs and leave Medicare to “wither on the vine;”
  3. Turn Medicare into a means-tested program;
  4. Cause retirees to lose the drug coverage they have currently;

Roger Hickey, Institute for America’s Future, co-director – moderator
Theodore Marmor, Yale University, author, The Politics of Medicare.
Gail Shearer, Consumers Union, author of new report, Medicare Drugs Plan :
Too High a Price for Modest Benefit
Chuck Loveless, AFSCME Director of Legislation

Note:  A Senior Rally “Against Passing a Lemon of a Bill” will be held at noon Wednesday in the Russell Caucus Room, Russell Senate Office Building (third floor).  Sponsored by the Alliance for Retired Americans and other senior leaders.

Medicare coalition comprised of senior, disability rights, labor, and consumer
organizations fighting for Medicare prescription drug coverage to respond to the Congressional Drug Plan, release new report.

Wednesday, November 19, 2003

1-866-330-1200   code: 134-922#

For more information contact Anne Macri at 202/955-5665 or