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New Data on Impact of Inflation Reduction Act Shows Lower Health Care Costs for Women

Earlier this month, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) released research showing how Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) provisions will lower costs for women with Medicare–including nearly 30 million women who have Part D.

The ASPE data show that if the IRA’s $35 cap on cost sharing for Medicare-covered insulin had been in place in 2020, about 733,000 women with Medicare would have saved money and that in 2021, about two million women with Medicare received recommended vaccines that are now covered with zero cost sharing. They also project that about 857,000 women enrolled in Part D will save $1,000 or more in 2025 as a result of the IRA’s redesign of the prescription drug program’s structure. 

In the administration’s announcement about the findings, CMS Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure notes that “[w]omen throughout the country are disproportionately impacted by high health care costs” and that the IRA “is bridging this gap by lowering prescription drug costs and making health care more accessible for women–and all people–with Medicare.” ASPE’s Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Rebecca Haffajee highlighted that their research shows that “[m]ost Medicare Part D enrollees are women, and some conditions that can be effectively treated with prescription drugs are more[…] likely to affect women than men–such as autoimmune disorders.” Thus drug cost savings are particularly impactful for this population. 

Women make up more than half of all Medicare enrollment, so ensuring their access to affordable health care is vital. At Medicare Rights, we continue to work toward better care and coverage for all older adults, people with disabilities, and their families.

Read the report here.

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