NCWO hails PhRMA’s Offer to Reduce Prescription Drug Costs

The National Council of Women’s Organizations (NCWO) applauds the recent agreement between Senator Max Baucus and the nation's pharmaceuticals as a “major step in the right direction” toward real healthcare reform. NCWO Chair Susan Scanlan noted that the agreement is a concrete example of how to bring down healthcare costs and reduce the price of prescription drugs for millions of America's seniors without compromising on quality.

In the President’s announcement of the agreement on Saturday, June 20, he explained that “pharmaceutical companies will extend discounts on prescription drugs to millions of seniors who currently are subjected to crushing out-of-pocket expenses when the yearly amounts they pay for medication fall within the doughnut hole any payments by seniors not covered by Medicare that fall between $2700 and $6153.75 per year. The existence of this gap in coverage has been a continuing injustice that has placed a great burden on many seniors. This deal will provide significant relief from that burden for millions of American seniors". NCWO members – 12 million strong – are particularly pleased with this agreement as Medicare is the critical source of health insurance coverage for virtually all older women in the U.S. and for many younger women who have permanent disabilities. Today, 22 million women, or one in five adult women, rely on Medicare for basic health insurance protection. In fact, women comprise 57% of the Medicare population. Medicare helps make health care more affordable for older women at a time in their lives when they are most likely to have multiple health problems that require ongoing and often costly medical treatment.

Scanlan also expressed hope that this remarkable agreement to lower prescription drug costs for seniors will serve as a example for the larger package of reforms that will be passed this year by Congress and signed into law by President Obama.

The National Council of Women's Organizations (NCWO) is a nonpartisan, nonprofit umbrella organization of more than 230 groups, which collectively represent over 12 million women across the country. It is the only national coalition of its kind.