Preserving Patient Access to Care in Medicare and Medicare Part D
AS AMENDED REPRESENTATIVE JOSEPH E. MIRÓ (DE) INTRODUCED NATIONAL SUMMIT HEALTH CARE TASK FORCE
WHEREAS, Medicare and Medicare Part D work for America, and provide seniors and disabled Americans with access to affordable treatments and medicine; and
WHEREAS, low-income Americans, members of racial and ethnic minorities, people with disabilities, and other underserved populations often face limited access to health care and experience poorer health outcomes across their lifespan. Older Americans in these underserved populations are also less likely to get the preventive care they need to stay healthy. Improving utilization of Medicare-covered benefits could significantly reduce health care disparities in this country; and
WHEREAS, Medicare Part D provides 90 percent of all Medicare beneficiaries with comprehensive and affordable prescription drug coverage and costs 40 percent less than initially projected; and
WHEREAS, a recent study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that the implementation of Medicare Part D enhanced access and adherence to medication and reduced hospital, nursing home and other costs for seniors who had previously lacked comprehensive prescription drug coverage; and
WHEREAS, it is critical to consider how across-the-board spending cuts, triggered by the failure of the Congressional Super Committee to reduce the national budget deficit, will result in changes to Medicare and Medicare Part D and how these changes will impact patient care, medical innovation and the U.S. economy; and
WHEREAS, spending cuts to Medicare have the potential to limit patients’ access to care, cause health care providers to leave the Medicare program, and result in care rationing for millions of Americans, particularly seniors, low-income individuals, and people with disabilities; and
WHEREAS, spending cuts also have the potential to negatively impact biopharmaceutical innovation which has proven to be a powerful economic engine that drives investor returns, strengthens national competitiveness, boosts economic growth, and supports more than 4 million U.S. jobs; and
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that although the national budget deficit is a threat to U.S. viability, efforts to reduce our debt must not result in the changing or dismantling of highly effective health care programs and must not come at the expense of patient access to care; and
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED, that the NHCSL Health Care and the Business and Economic Development Task Forces are also required to form a broader set of principles on entitlement reform and deficit reduction.
THIS RESOLUTION WAS ADOPTED AND RATIFIED ON NOVEMBER 17, 2012 AT THE NHCSL ANNUAL MEETING HELD IN ALBUQUERQUE, NEW MEXICO.
Sponsored by: Representative Joseph E. Miró (DE)