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Medicare prescription drug benefit: importance of curbing growth of prescription drug expenditures

Summary: Consumers Union Testimony on Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit

Whether your preferred method of providing Medicare prescription drug coverage is to expand the role of the private marketplace or to rely on an expanded governmental role, lower growth of expenditures make it is far easier to design a decent benefit. The rapid growth in
prescription drug expenditures, combined with a modest Medicare prescription drug benefit, create a troubling reality for Medicare beneficiaries: If prescription drug expenditures continue to increase at the same rate as the past five years, many Medicare beneficiaries would find that their out-of-pocket costs in 2007 are actually higher than they are today, even with coverage as provided in H.R. 1. We do not believe that the average Medicare beneficiary will view this legislation as providing meaningful relief from the financial burden of prescription drug expenditures.
For more of this testimony, click here.