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Season 4, Episode 184

Medicare drug price negotiations continue to impact Retirees



Guest Name:

Rich Fiesta

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Executive Director for the Alliance for Retired Americans, Rich Fiesta, joined the America’s Work Force Union Podcast to discuss the fight for Medicare to negotiate prescription drug prices, the impact on retirees and the need for Social Security expansion.

The Alliance has been fighting for fair pricing for Medicare drug prescriptions. They recently released a 10-drug list to begin negotiations. Right now, the United States pays more for prescription drugs than any other country. Fiesta outlined the factors that have led to this battle and some ways they’ve worked to improve the situation for retirees.

The list features drugs that often appear in retirees' prescription drug needs. Medicare Part D members are getting these drugs at a greater risk to the longevity of the Medicare program. Lowering the price of these drugs, would lead to lower expenses for Medicare, and in turn, it would give Medicare more budget freedom. There are now eight lawsuits against the drug negotiation process. An Ohio judge will hear the first of these lawsuits on Oct. 1. The quicker the cases are heard, the shorter the time until negotiations can begin, Fiesta said.

Social Security expansion is necessary, and the Alliance has been fighting for greater improvements to Social Security with its “Scrap the Cap” initiatives. The Social Security trustees believe there is only enough funding for full benefits until 2033 or 2034. Congress needs to do something about the funding immediately, Fiesta said.

To hear more from Fiesta, please press play on the episode above.

America’s Work Force is the only daily labor podcast in the US and has been on the air since 1993, supplying listeners with useful, relevant input into their daily lives through fact-finding features, in-depth interviews, informative news segments and practical consumer reports. America’s Work Force is committed to providing an accessible venue in which America's workers and their families can hear discussion on important, relevant topics such as employment, healthcare, legislative action, labor-management relations, corporate practices, finances, local and national politics, consumer reports and labor issues.

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