Health Care Law Saved 6.1 Million People on Medicare Over $5.7 Billion on Prescription Drugs in 2012, New Report Shows

Seniors on Medicare Save $5.7 Billion in Prescription Drug Costs in 2012 under Affordable Care Act, Medicare ReportsThe U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a new report on February 7, 2013, showing that during 2012, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (which some call “Obamacare”) has saved 6.1 million people on Medicare more than $5.7 Billion on prescription drugs, up from the Medicare prescription drug savings realized in 2011 under the Act.

A full copy of the new report, “The Affordable Care Act – A Stronger Medicare Program in 2012,” is found on the CMS website.

According to the report, the 2012 savings in prescription costs resulted from provisions in the health care reform law closing the so-called “donut hole” in the Medicare Part D prescription drug coverage, which was a large coverage gap contained in the Medicare D program passed by Congress during the Bush Administration.

In 2012, people with Medicare to whom the “donut hole” coverage gap had applied, received a 50 percent discount on covered brand name drugs and 14 percent discount on generic drugs, according to the report. As a result of the Affordable Care Act, coverage for both brand name and generic drugs will continue to increase over time until the coverage gap is fully closed in 2020.

The report, which is 15 pages long, “details how millions of seniors and people with disabilities with Medicare continued to experience lower costs on prescription drugs and improved benefits in 2012 because of the Affordable Care Act,” an introduction in the report states.

The report includes updated information about Medicare premiums, beneficiaries’ use of the program’s preventive medicine coverage, and other matters.

According to the report, use of preventive services has expanded among people with Medicare. “In 2012 alone, an estimated 34.1 million people with Medicare benefited from Medicare’s coverage of preventive services with no cost-sharing,” the report states.

More Information

Read the full Report:The Affordable Care Act – A Stronger Medicare Program in 2012 by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

For more information about Medicare coverage and benefits, and other financial and legal issues of interest and concern to seniors and family caregivers, see the HelpingYouCare® resource pages on Legal and Financial Issues for Seniors & Caregivers, including:

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