Release: Vermont Senators Statement on Senior Prescription Drug Rebates

WASHINGTON, June 11 – Sens. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) today issued a joint statement about the state of Vermont’s plans to ask some seniors, who participate in the state’s VPharm supplemental prescription assistance program, to turn over part or all of their new federal Medicare prescription drug rebates.

“At a time when Vermont seniors are hurting, the state should reconsider its plans to ask many low-income seniors to return this much-needed help.  The state’s rebate recall also would add confusion and new layers of complexity for seniors and for the state.  Vermont seniors who are struggling enough already to pay for the medicine they need can use all the help they can get.”

Under the new health insurance reform law, federal Medicare offices began sending the first rebate checks Thursday.  In all, some 9,000 Vermont seniors this year will receive a one-time $250 rebate check as the new federal health care law begins to close a gap in Medicare coverage for prescription medicine.