FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – Charlottetown, PE (February 20, 2014) – NDP PEI Leader Mike Redmond says that the Ghiz Government recently passed changes to drug cost legislation that will deal a serious financial blow to seniors who have private and group health plans.
“Previously, under the Drug Cost Assistance Plan (DCAP), the Province was the first payer of drug costs for seniors who are members of health plans,” said Redmond. “Under new legislation, the insurer will be the first payer. This will result in huge new annual costs to health plans, costs that will surely be borne by the seniors themselves.”
The Government passed the new provisions with very little fanfare and with scarce notice from the Official Opposition. However, the new costs will mean that substantial rate increases for insured individuals 65 and older will be necessary. Seniors on fixed incomes who already pay significant premiums for their health plans will be faced with the necessity of increased rates, just to maintain benefits that currently exist.
“The Government boasted that these changes would save the Province $4 million, and wealthy insurance companies would carry the burden,” continued Redmond. “In reality, it will be retired individuals who can least afford it who will be hit with these new costs. The Government’s financial mismanagement is again falling on the backs of PEI’s seniors.”
Leader, NDP PEI