Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi

Pelosi: We Need An Affordable, Guaranteed Prescription Drug Plan Now

June 13, 2002

Washington, D.C. -- House Democrats unveiled their prescription drug plan today to help seniors with the high costs of prescription drugs. Democratic Whip Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) issued the following statement today:

“For years, this Congress has talked about helping seniors pay for the medication they need to maintain their health, but the Republican leadership has not responded. We must act now to ensure that older Americans have access to the medicines that will enable them to lead healthy, active lives. We cannot afford to delay until after the elections in November simply to provide political cover for those who oppose helping seniors.

The Democratic plan will guarantee seniors access to all the medications their doctors prescribe, without any gaps in coverage or gimmicks that limit access. Our plan is simple, voluntary, and affordable. It provides relief for the thousands of seniors who must choose between buying food and taking their medication. Under the Democratic plan, no matter who you are, where you are, or how sick you are, you would be covered.

This benefit will be similar to what seniors and individuals with disabilities get in Medicare now. Under the Democratic plan, seniors and individuals with disabilities will be able to keep making the choices that matter. Seniors won’t have to join an HMO to get drug coverage. Nor will they be forced to join a private insurance plan that will restrict access to needed drugs, deny coverage for the medicine their doctor prescribes, or force them to change pharmacies.

Democrats will ensure that seniors will always be able to obtain the drugs their doctor says they need at reduced prices and will be able to choose where to fill their prescriptions.”