The Medicare Prescription Drug Act of 2003 introduces one of the most innovative additions to the present Medicare Law. It has been hailed as one of the truly heartfelt laws to come along. It now attempts to cover outpatient prescription drugs. The present law covers drugs received by inpatients in hospitals and other medical facilities and drugs that require physician intervention to be administered either through injection or infusion. Injections like insulin that can be self-administered are however, not covered. This will be a major help not only to senior citizens, which seems to be one of the great beneficiaries of this law, but also to individuals in the lower income bracket. Mccombs and Robinsons (28) declared that "recent information presented by the National Caucus and Center on Black Aged and the Kaiser Family Foundation shows that 43% of African-Americans with Medicare lacked drug coverage for all or part of the year in 2002".
[...] Summer 2004: 37+. Curl, Joseph. Bush Signs Medicare Bill; Democrats Vow Repeal. The Washington Times. December 2003: A14. HR 1. Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003. Retrieved from the Ways and Means Committee Archives April waysandmeans.house.gov/media/pdf/hr1/hr1jtexplstate.pdf Larkin, Heather. Justice Implications of a Proposed Medicare Prescription Drug Policy. Social Work. Volume: 49. Issue: 3. 2004: 406+. Legislative History. P.L. 108-173 (H.R S H.R H.R. 2473). Retrieved from Office of the Legislative Policy and Analysis website on April http://olpa.od.nih.gov/legislation/108/publiclaws/medicare.asp Mccombs, [...]
[...] The reason for this is that the act gives the options to people already enrolled in Medicare get a discount card, giving them immediate discounts of 10 percent and in two years, Medicare's optional prescription drug benefit (Part will replace the cards. Part D will pay for a portion of pharmaceutical purchases for people covered by Medicare who choose the optional coverage” (Cauchi 28). This was the transitional program designed by lawmakers. Cauchi further states that these transitional drugs were already available in May 2004 Medicare beneficiaries who are not receiving Medicaid drug coverage”. [...]
[...] The Clinton administration also tried to incorporate prescription drug coverage in its comprehensive health care reform package in 1993 and introduced as the Health Security Act. But after months of comprehensive hearings and debate, it failed to generate enough support to make it to the floor of either house of Congress to vote. Medicare beneficiaries were, however, permitted to purchase supplemental benefits through Medigap plans (Larkin 728). This however was very restrictive and prescribed certain qualifications for the beneficiaries. “Policymakers have debated the need to add prescription drug coverage to Medicare since the program's original enactment in the 1960s. [...]
[...] Medicare also covers pneumococcal pneumonia vaccines, hepatitis B vaccines, and influenza virus vaccines [Sec The new law makes a compelling description of its goals to “provide prescription drug benefits to senior citizens, modernizing the program by making benefits, cost sharing and delivery of care, more rational, and strengthening Medicare financially for current and future generations”. This law focuses its attention on the needs of senior citizens who, by average, take more than 20 prescription drugs per year and with 25 percent of them without prescription drug coverage from HMOs (Conference Agreement, Section 101). [...]
[...] However, with the crisis that the current government is experiencing, with people losing their homes and the looming threat of a second Depression in the making, the Medicare Prescription Drug Act of 2003 couldn't have come at a worse time. However, we cannot fault people for finding ways to better the lives of people. Our policy makers have indeed made history with this law and this is something that we can all be proud of despite the setbacks. One of the greatest capabilities of human beings is to adapt to all kinds of situations. [...]
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