As we continue to celebrate the 1 year anniversary of the Affordable Care Act, we look to the changes that affect senior citizens and highlight how far we’ve come in just one year. One of the first provisions to take effect under the new law was the beginning of the closing of the Medicare donut hole.
According to the White House, last year, roughly 97,800 Medicare beneficiaries in Georgia hit the donut hole and received no additional help to defray the cost of their prescription drugs. As of last August, approximately 21,723 seniors in Georgia received their $250 tax free rebate for hitting the donut hole. In 2011, people who reach the donut hole will receive a 50% discount on brand-name drugs and will be eligible for reduced-price generic drugs. This is just the beginning of the benefits that seniors will begin to see with implementation of the new law.
The Affordable Care Act goes further to strengthen Medicare, saving seniors money by cracking down on waste, fraud, and abuse. It also keeps seniors healthier by allowing them to get free preventive care, such as annual check-ups and cancer screenings. And, for seniors who need long-term care, it creates new options so that they can avoid nursing homes and receive care at home.
For more information, check out this new video from www.healthcare.gov, Improving Medicare in 2011 which explores upcoming changes that will affect senior citizens across the country and here in Georgia.