Tonko helps introduce bill to expand low-income seniors’ access to prescriptions

New York News

NEW YORK – OCTOBER 12: Carole Jaquez displays a box of pills for her asthma and high blood pressure condition purchased in Canada at a 58.9% savings October 12, 2004 in New York City. Twenty-five senior citizens on the East Coast are traveling together on the Silver Meteor train, dubbed the Rx Express, which will take them to Toronto, Canada, to purchase prescription drugs at a cost 30-60% less than U.S. prices. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON (NEWS10) — Representatives Paul D. Tonko (NY-20) and Chris Pappas (NH-01) introduced on Thursday the Advancing Enrollment and Reducing Drug Costs Act. This legislation would expand low-income seniors’ access to prescription drugs under the Medicare prescription drug benefit program, also known as Medicare Part D.

“Now more than ever, America’s seniors need secure, reliable access to cost-effective care,” Congressman Tonko said. “Our legislation ensures seniors can get the prescriptions they need at an affordable price by using their existing Medicare eligibility. I’m proud to join Congressman Pappas in moving forward with this practical and compassionate bill that will help millions of Americans get the prescriptions they need to survive and to live.”

Medicare Part D was created to help low-income seniors afford their prescription drugs despite sky-rocketing costs. However, current law does not automatically enroll eligible seniors who previously qualified under Medicaid Expansion. Tonko and Pappas say this leaves thousands of eligible seniors struggling to access life-saving prescription drugs, unaware they are eligible for assistance. This legislation helps automatically enroll individuals who aged out of Medicaid Expansion and into Medicare. 

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