THE NEWSLETTER

Today's Note From a Madman

Wednesday, May 4, 2005

 



The following is directly from the NATIONALVIEW.ORG website. Just like President Bush's plan for Social Security (you know, the plan that doesn't exist), Medicare's new drug "benefit" plan is of no "benefit" at all.

THE MEDICARE PRESCRIPTION DRUG BENEFIT PLAN
Or "How can George W. Bush help the pharmaceutical companies make more money off the American senior?"

When is something not better than nothing? When it is George W. Bush's Prescription drug plan presumebly designed to help seniors. Although seniors make up only 12 percent of the population, they use one third of all prescription drugs sold in the United States.

Under President Bush's bill, seniors will have to pay a $35 a month premium, a $250 deductible and 25% of drug expenses until $2,250. At $2,250, seniors enter what is called the ‘donut hole’ where they will have to pay, out-of-pocket, for the next $2850 in drug expenses, until they reach $5100. After $5100, the senior will qualify for catastrophic coverage. Basically, seniors must pay for the first $4,020 of $5,100 in drug benefits. Then January rolls around and these lucky seniors get to pay all over again.

As an example, let's take a widowed senior citizen with an annual income of $24,000 ($11,300 is the magic number - the minimum a senior citizen earns to "qualify" for the Medicare drug benefit plan). Let's also assume she uses $500 per month in retail prescription drugs. If you took Governor George W. Bush at his word during the 2000 campaign, you might think that this senior would have to pay nothing out-of-pocket. This is NOT the case. This senior will end up paying $3,940.00 of the $6000 per year she uses on prescription drugs. That's almost 66% of the total drug cost! Starting in June and ending with October, she will be paying a whopping $510 per month on her prescription drugs. That's almost 75%!

"all seniors are covered under prescription drugs in my plan"

-Gov. George W. Bush stated during the 2000 presidential campaign

 

That is unless you looked at his plan. Only seniors that earned less than $11,300 per year qualify and seniors with $14,600 worth of annual income would have partial coverage. Others could receive 25 percent of the premium for a drug plan, but that didn't help those in the middle who might not be able to afford the other 75 percent. Governor Bush's statement was a lie then and President Bush's Medicare Prescription Drug Plan is a sham now.
 

  Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Annual Totals
Monthly Retail Drug Cost $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $6,000.00
Monthly Income $2,000.00 $2,000.00 $2,000.00 $2,000.00 $2,000.00 $2,000.00 $2,000.00 $2,000.00 $2,000.00 $2,000.00 $2,000.00 $2,000.00 $24,000.00
Monthly Premium ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($420.00)
Annual Deductible ($250.00)                       ($250.00)
co-pay or Donut Hole ($62.50) ($125.00) ($125.00) ($125.00) ($190.00) ($475.00) ($475.00) ($475.00) ($475.00) ($475.00) ($142.50) ($125.00) ($3,270.00)
total left for living $1,652.50 $1,840.00 $1,840.00 $1,840.00 $1,775.00 $1,490.00 $1,490.00 $1,490.00 $1,490.00 $1,490.00 $1,822.50 $1,840.00 $20,060.00
Total out-of-pocket expenxe ($347.50) ($160.00) ($160.00) ($160.00) ($225.00) ($510.00) ($510.00) ($510.00) ($510.00) ($510.00) ($177.50) ($160.00) ($3,940.00)
Percentage paid by Medicare 30.50% 68.00% 68.00% 68.00% 55.00% -2.00% -2.00% -2.00% -2.00% -2.00% 64.50% 68.00%  
Annually paid by senior ($3,940.00)
Annually paid by the Medicare Prescription Drug Plan $2,060.00
Percentage of prescription drugs paid by the Medicare Prescription Drug Plan 34.33%
Percentage of prescription drugs paid by the the Individual Senior Citizen -65.67%

 

When we take those same numbers and assume the widow is earning that magical $14,600 number, the money she has left to love her life becomes a bad joke:

$10,660 left for living! That's Pitiful!

 

  Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Annual Totals
Monthly Retail Drug Cost $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $500.00 $6,000.00
Monthly Income $1,216.67 $1,216.67 $1,216.67 $1,216.67 $1,216.67 $1,216.67 $1,216.67 $1,216.67 $1,216.67 $1,216.67 $1,216.67 $1,216.67 $14,600.04
Monthly Premium ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($35.00) ($420.00)
Annual Deductible ($250.00)                       ($250.00)
co-pay or Donut Hole ($62.50) ($125.00) ($125.00) ($125.00) ($190.00) ($475.00) ($475.00) ($475.00) ($475.00) ($475.00) ($142.50) ($125.00) ($3,270.00)
total left for living $869.17 $1,056.67 $1,056.67 $1,056.67 $991.67 $706.67 $706.67 $706.67 $706.67 $706.67 $1,039.17 $1,056.67 $10,660.04
Total out-of-pocket expenxe ($347.50) ($160.00) ($160.00) ($160.00) ($225.00) ($510.00) ($510.00) ($510.00) ($510.00) ($510.00) ($177.50) ($160.00) ($3,940.00)
Percentage paid by Medicare 30.50% 68.00% 68.00% 68.00% 55.00% -2.00% -2.00% -2.00% -2.00% -2.00% 64.50% 68.00%  
Annually paid by senior ($3,940.00)
Annually paid by the Medicare Prescription Drug Plan $2,060.00
Percentage of prescription drugs paid by the Medicare Prescription Drug Plan 34.33%
Percentage of prescription drugs paid by the the Individual Senior Citizen -65.67%

 

-Noah Greenberg


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-Noah Greenberg