Statement of the National Alliance for Hispanic Health on Introduction of Territories Medicare Prescription Drug Assistance Equity Act
March 8, 2022
Washington, DC — “The COVID-19 pandemic has shown us the huge gaps that exist in access to health services and that the health of all of us is inexorably linked to each other. The Territories Medicare Prescription Drug Assistance Equity Act is an important step towards ensuring the health and well-being of all Americans,” stated Jane L. Delgado, PhD, MS, President and CEO of the National Alliance for Hispanic Health, in announcing the Alliance’s support for the Act.
The Territories Medicare Prescription Drug Assistance Equity Act, introduced today by Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ), would amend the Social Security Act to make Puerto Rico's Medicare beneficiaries eligible for the Medicare Part D Low Income Subsidy program. This program, also known as “Extra Help,” provides federal subsidies to help low-income seniors with their monthly premiums and other out-of-pocket prescription drug costs. Currently, Medicare beneficiaries in Puerto Rico and other U.S. territories are ineligible for subsidies under the “Extra Help” federal program. This unequal treatment results in far less assistance for low-income seniors living on the Island than seniors on the mainland who are eligible for Part D subsidies.
“Regardless of where you live, all should have access to affordable health care. Medicare beneficiaries in the 50 states and the District of Columbia can qualify for Medicare Part D subsidies; however, Medicare beneficiaries in Puerto Rico and other U.S. territories are ineligible for Medicare Part D subsidies. It is time to correct what has been wrong for too long.” concluded Dr. Delgado.
About the National Alliance for Hispanic Health (The Alliance)
The Alliance is the nation’s foremost science-based source of information and trusted advocate for the health of Hispanics in the United States with a mission to achieve the best health for all. For more information visit us at www.healthyamericas.org