50 Wishes for
Medicare’s Future

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Wish #9:
Close the Part D doughnut hole sooner

The Affordable Care Act took a historic step toward making prescription drugs more affordable by closing the Part D prescription drug coverage gap (or doughnut hole). Until 2010, while in the doughnut hole, beneficiaries were responsible for the full cost of needed medications. Over time, this obligation is gradually diminishing, and the doughnut hole will be fully closed by 2020. Congress should close the doughnut hole sooner by increasing discounts expected from pharmaceutical manufacturers. This policy proposal represents a win-win by lowering the cost of prescription drugs for beneficiaries and securing over $16 billion in savings for the Medicare program over 10 years.