Not All Seniors To Get $200 Medicare Drug Cards Before Election

Inside Health Policy

By: John Wilkerson

Only some seniors will receive the president’s $200 Medicare Part D cards for copays before the election because it will take months to issue the cards, White House officials said Friday (Sept. 25). Officials declined to say how the cards would be paid for, but on a call with industry representatives, White House officials said the one-time Medicare gift cards would test whether giving seniors $200 saves money by making it more likely that seniors take their medicine, thereby lowering other health costs by reducing hospitalizations… Consumer advocates and health policy professors say the administration lacks legal authority to send beneficiaries $200 gift cards. Georgetown University Research Professor Edwin Park said section 402 is designed for testing new approaches to paying providers and organizations. It doesn’t contemplate payments to individuals or changes to eligibility or cost-sharing.

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