September 4, 2001
The Honorable George W. Bush
United States of America
1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
Washington, D.C. 20500-0003
Dear Mr. President:
Thank you for your commitment to modernizing Medicare and ensuring that senior citizens have the ability to use Medicare funds to help pay for prescription drugs. This is a necessity if the federal government is to keep the promise made to working Americans that they will have quality health care in their golden years.
Of course, I also share your commitment to ensuring that any Medicare prescription drug plan considered by Congress ensures senior citizens the maximum amount of choice and control over their health care. The best way to provide seniors with access to the prescription drugs of their choice is to expand the Medicare Medical Savings Account (MSA) program.
Medicare MSAs were created as part of the Medicare+Choice program. However, they are only available to a limited number of Medicare recipients. I have introduced legislation, HR 2802, to extend the Medicare MSA program to all seniors. I respectfully request that language expanding the availability of Medicare MSAs to all seniors, similar to that included in HR 2802, be included in your Medicare reform plan.
Medicare MSAs provide senior citizens the ability to control their Medicare dollars. Medicare MSAs consist of a special savings account containing Medicare funds for seniors to use for their routine medical expenses, including prescription drug costs. Seniors in a Medicare MSA program are also provided with a catastrophic insurance policy to cover non-routine expenses such as major surgery. Under an MSA plan the choice of whether to use Medicare funds for prescription drug costs is made by the senior not by bureaucrats and politicians.
Expanding access to Medical Savings Accounts represents the best means of ensuring senior citizens access to prescription drugs as well as providing seniors greater control over their health care decisions. I therefore respectfully request your administration include language to provide all seniors access to the Medicare MSA program in any Medicare reform proposal it presents to the Congress.