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U.S. Representative Eddie Bernice Johnson, Representing the 30th District of Texas

AFFORDABLE CARE ACT OFFERS PRESCRIPTION DRUG COST RELIEF TO MORE THAN $42K MEDICARE BENEFICIARIES IN TEXAS

Aug 10, 2010
Press Release

AFFORDABLE CARE ACT OFFERS PRESCRIPTION DRUG COST RELIEF TO MORE THAN $42K MEDICARE BENEFICIARIES IN TEXAS

New Law Offers Third Round of One-Time, Tax Free $250 Rebate Checks for Eligible Medicare Beneficiaries in Medicare Part D Donut Hole

Washington, DC — (Tuesday, August 10, 2010) Congresswoman Johnson supports the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services mailing of the third round of one-time, tax free $250 rebate checks to eligible Medicare beneficiaries. These beneficiaries’ drug costs are so high that they have now reached what is known as the Medicare Part D prescription “donut hole.”

In Texas, approximately 42,247 seniors and persons with disabilities who rely on Medicare for access to health care have received new help with their prescription drug costs to date, thanks to the Affordable Care Act. Across the country, more than 750,000 Medicare beneficiaries have already received checks this year, and more beneficiaries will be receiving checks in the coming months as they enter the coverage gap.

“The benefits of this bill continue to increase as time moves along. I feel this is probably the most herald achievement in the last 25 years,” said Congresswoman Johnson. “It makes it so much better for seniors.”

The rebate checks will partly close the donut hole this year, with the $250 one-time checks for beneficiaries who enter the gap. In 2011, the Affordable Care Act takes an additional step for Medicare beneficiaries in the donut hole by providing them with a 50 percent discount on their brand name medications. Every year from 2011 to 2020, the Affordable Care Act will take progressive steps towards closing the donut hole.

In addition to savings on prescription drugs, the new law takes a series of steps to strengthen Medicare. Under the Affordable Care Act:

•    Medicare beneficiaries will receive free preventive care services like mammograms and certain colon cancer tests and a free annual physical starting in 2011;

•    By 2018, seniors can expect to save on average almost $200 per year in premiums compared to what they would have paid without the new law, and most beneficiaries will also see a significant reduction in their Medicare coinsurance as a result of the Affordable Care Act; and

•    The life of the Medicare Trust Fund is now expected to remain solvent until 2029.


Medicare beneficiaries who do not already receive Medicare’s Extra Help receive these checks automatically in the mail when they reach the donut hole; there is no requirement to sign up. Seniors should never give out personal information to anyone who is not a trusted source. Seniors are encouraged to contact 1-800-MEDICARE to report any solicitations of personal information, or go to www.stopmedicarefraud.gov  to learn about how the Affordable Care Act helps to protect seniors from scams and safeguard taxpayer dollars.

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U.S. Representative Eddie Bernice Johnson is the highest-ranking Texan on the House Committee on Transportation & Infrastructure and a senior member of the Science Committee. She represents the 30th Congressional District of Texas, which, includes Downtown Dallas, Fair Park, Oak Lawn, Turtle Creek, Old East Dallas, Pleasant Grove, & South Oak Cliff; all of Balch Springs, DeSoto, Hutchins, Lancaster & Wilmer and parts of Cedar Hill, Duncanville, Ferris, Glenn Heights and Ovilla.