Oversight of the Medicare Prescription Drug Program


May 4, 2006

Oversight of the Medicare Prescription Drug Program

Madame Chair, Members of the Subcommittee:
Thank you very much for the opportunity to testify.
Consumers Union, the independent, nonprofit publisher of Consumer Reports, strongly supports major reform of the new Medicare prescription drug program (Part D). We believe that the current structure of the program will always be too confusing for seniors and people with disabilities, and be subject to plan abuse and adverse selection. We also believe that the program is too expensive for beneficiaries, taxpayers, and future generations, and that we must find a way to obtain lower-cost pharmaceuticals. Therefore, we support major amendments to the law that would provide for the option of a Medicare-administered, dependable, reliable, standard plan in which Medicare negotiates (much like the Department of Veterans Affairs) to get lower-cost pharmaceuticals.
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