Roth, Moynihan Urge Pharmaceutical Insurance Industries to Meet Prescription Drug Challenge for Medicare
WASHINGTON -- Senate Finance Committee Chairman William V. Roth, Jr. (R-DE) and Ranking Democratic Member Daniel Patrick Moynihan (D-NY), in a letter to pharmaceutical and insurance industry representatives, urged their cooperation and collaboration in meeting the challenge of creating a prescription drug benefit for Medicare beneficiaries.
"We are writing to you to urge that your two industries collaborate to bring your differing perspectives and expertise to bear on this problem, and to provide us with specific recommendations on the development of a high-quality, affordable prescription drug benefit for Medicare beneficiaries," Roth and Moynihan stated in the letter.
A copy of the letter is attached.
January 12, 2000
Carl B. Feldbaum Karen Ignagni
Biotechnology Industry Organization American Association of Health Plans
1625 K Street, NW 1129 20th Street, NW, Suite 600
Washington, D.C. 20006 Washington, D.C. 20036
Mary Grealy Chip Kahn
Healthcare Leadership Council Health Insurance Association of America
900 17th Street, NW, Suite 600 555 13th Street, NW
Washington, D.C. 20006 Washington, D.C. 20004
Alan Holmer Mary Nell Lehnhard
PhRMA Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association
1100 15th Street, NW 1310 G Street
Washington, D.C. 20005 Washington, D.C. 20005
Meeting the Challenge of Prescription Drug Coverage in Medicare
One of the most important challenges facing the U.S. Congress is how to strengthen the Medicare program, including, but not limited to, consideration of a prescription drug benefit for Medicare beneficiaries.
As you know, at present, employers providing retiree health benefits are the single largest source of coverage for the post-65 population, followed by the States through Medicaid and other state programs. These programs, in combination with other sources, provide coverage to about two-thirds of the elderly. The task before us is how best to close this gap and ensure that all Medicare beneficiaries have coverage for prescription drugs.
It is a challenging assignment to integrate a Medicare drug benefit with these other forms of coverage in a way that is fiscally responsible, yet promotes the innovation that has led to so many medical care breakthroughs.
As leaders of both the pharmaceutical and insurance industries, you are in a critical position to help us meet this challenge. We are writing to you to urge that your two industries collaborate to bring your differing perspectives and expertise to bear on this problem, and to provide us with specific recommendations on the development of a high-quality, affordable prescription drug benefit for Medicare beneficiaries.
We intend to consult widely with other interested parties on this matter and appreciate your consideration of this request. We know you share our concern that the vital and indispensable products of the pharmaceutical industry reach all Medicare beneficiaries.
William V. Roth, Jr.
Daniel Patrick Moynihan
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