Administration Drops Proposed Medicare Changes

WASHINGTON (March 10, 2014) The Obama administration says it's dropping proposed changes to the Medicare prescription program that ran into strong opposition on Capitol Hill.

Among other things, the administration was proposing the removal of three classes of drugs from a special protected list that guarantees seniors access to a wide selection of critical medications.

The three classes of drugs facing removal were antidepressants, antipsychotics and drugs that suppress the immune system to prevent rejection of a transplanted organ.

The administration had hoped to save a total of $729 million by 2019 through the change, but patient groups including the National Kidney Foundation and the National Alliance on Mental Illness pushed back hard.

Medicare administrator Marilyn Tavenner said Monday in a letter to Congress that the administration will not move forward with the proposed changes.

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