The vision that goes into these Blogs is to inform our readers of things pertaining to the subject of Medicare and not to sway public opinion. Having said that, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 3. This is the first time that either chamber of Congress has passed a bill containing these crucial prescription drug provisions and Medicare expansions, and it serves as an important pathway for policy change. While you might not agree with all the recommended changes, it is certainly a hot topic for consideration.
The focus of the bill is to reduce the high cost of prescription drugs paid by the Medicare program and others. Drug companies that hike drug costs above the rate of inflation has been a heated topic for the last few years. This bill sets forth a plan to provide relief for such price gouging. Consumers will have a $2,000 annual out-of-pocket maximum for Part D prescription drug costs.
As most bills do, this bill has riders that accompany the original purpose set forth in the body of the bill. For example, Sec. 601 accommodates dental benefits; Sec. 602 assists those with hearing issues; and Sec. 603 addresses those with vision problems. This seems to be an effort to bring Original Medicare onto the same playing field with Medicare Advantage Plans.
Other provisions of this bill address Part B coverage of colorectal screening tests and certain lymphedema compression treatment items.
I share this information with you so you can stay updated and know what might be coming down the road for Medicare. Be on the alert for news articles about this bill and any counter bills that could affect Part D prescription drug costs.