Washington AIDS Advisory Council Urges Gov. to Assist HIV-Positive Dual Eligibles With New Drug Co-Payments
September 2, 2004
The Washington state Governor's Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS on Tuesday adopted a report to send to Gov. Gary Locke (D) urging him to take steps to help HIV-positive individuals who are dually eligible for Medicaid and Medicare pay for the cost of new drug co-payments, the Seattle Post-Intelligencer reports. Currently, dual eligibles -- some of whom are the "sickest and poorest" patients statewide, including HIV-positive people, low-income seniors and people with disabilities such as multiple sclerosis or cerebral palsy -- are exempt from prescription drug co-payments. However, under the new law known as the Medicaid Modernization Act, dual eligibles by 2006 will be required to sign up for Medicare prescription drug benefits and pay between $1 and $5 per prescription or relinquish drug coverage completely, according to the Post-Intelligencer. The council's report urges the governor to lobby the federal government to use federal funds to cover the cost of co-pays for dual eligibles. However, the report says that if the federal government will not cover the costs, the state has a "moral obligation" to offset the cost of co-pays for dual eligibles, according to the Post-Intelligencer.
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This article was provided by Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. It is a part of the publication Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report. Visit the Kaiser Family Foundation's website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.