WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman John Garamendi (D-Fairfield, CA), California’s Insurance Commissioner for eight years, today is pleased to hear the announcement from the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services that more than 2.65 million Medicare recipients saved more than $1.5 billion in 2011 for prescription drugs, an average of $569 per person. Meanwhile, premiums remain stable in the system, and more than 24 million seniors have received a free annual physical or other medical screening – free procedures made possible through the Patient’s Bill of Rights, which is part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
"The Patient’s Bill of Rights is making quality health coverage more affordable for millions of seniors, with significant prescription drug savings and free preventative health screenings," Congressman Garamendi said. "This is good new for every American who hopes to retire with dignity, and it’s only possible because President Obama and Democrats in Congress were willing to take the tough votes necessary to improve our health care system."
"As a former Insurance Commissioner, I was proud to help lead the charge to pass the Patient’s Bill of Rights, because I’ve seen what happens when the insurance industry sharks are allowed to run amok without proper oversight," added Congressman Garamendi. "While we were able to improve Medicare, my Republican colleagues are determined to destroy it. They voted to replace Medicare with an underfunded coupon system. As long as I’m in Congress, I’ll do all I can to protect Medicare benefits and stop this assault on seniors’ retirement security."