Report: Drugs for dual eligibles cost more under Medicare Part D

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Report: Drugs for dual eligibles cost more under Medicare Part D
Report: Drugs for dual eligibles cost more under Medicare Part D
Prescription drugs for Medicare and Medicaid-eligible beneficiaries cost 30% more under Medicare Part D than they would if Medicaid paid the bill, according to a new report from the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

The report, which was released Thursday, also found that drug manufacturers received "windfall" revenue of more than $3.7 billion during the first two years of Part D. The Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003 required that Medicare Part D, not Medicaid, cover the cost of drugs for dual eligibles. Many nursing-home residents fall into this "dual-eligible" category.

Democrats in the House say this overpayment is an unjustified burden on the taxpayer, and they seek to correct the problem through new legislation. But House Republicans have countered that the new report overlooks important aspects and benefits to dual eligibles contained in the Part D program. Under Part D, for example, dual eligibles have access to a greater variety of prescription drugs.

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