May 11, 2018

Statement in Response to the Trump Administration’s Drug Pricing Speech,
by Joe Baker, President of the Medicare Rights Center

While it is not immediately clear how the framework President Trump and Secretary Azar previewed today will translate into actionable policy proposals, Medicare Rights supports efforts to improve the affordability of prescription drugs for people with Medicare, including through increased transparency and strengthened beneficiary protections.

From our experience assisting people with Medicare and their families, we know that prescription drug affordability is an ongoing challenge. Every day, through our National Consumer Helpline, we hear from older adults and people with disabilities who are struggling to cover their drug costs. This is not surprising, given that nearly half of all Medicare beneficiaries live on annual incomes of $26,200 or less, and one quarter live on $15,250 or less. Most people with Medicare simply cannot afford to pay more for health care. Accordingly, any forthcoming efforts to implement the Administration’s strategy must make prescription drugs more affordable, without otherwise increasing costs or reducing access to care for people with Medicare.

We look forward to reviewing the details of the Administration’s proposal, and to working with policymakers to pursue meaningful solutions that lower costs for people with Medicare.

Press Contact: Mitchell Clark –

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Medicare Rights Center is a national, nonprofit consumer service organization that works to ensure access to affordable health care for older adults and people with disabilities through counseling and advocacy, educational programs, and public policy initiatives.

Available only through the Medicare Rights Center, Medicare Interactive (MI) is a free and independent online reference tool that provides easy-to-understand answers to questions posed by people with Medicare, their families and caregivers, and the professionals serving them. Find your Medicare answers at

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