Bill Expanding Prescription Drug Assistance Program on Governor’s Desk, Causer Says

HARRISBURG – An estimated 17,000 additional Pennsylvanians could be eligible for prescription drug assistance from the state under legislation approved by the House and sent to the governor last week, said Rep. Martin Causer (R-Turtlepoint).

“Ensuring our senior citizens have affordable access to the prescription medications they need helps keep them healthy and out of the hospital, saving the taxpayers money in the long run,” Causer said.

“I look forward to seeing this bill signed into law in the near future.”

House Bill 270 would increase the maximum annual income limits in the PACENET program from $23,500 to $27,500 for a single person and from $31,500 to $35,500 for a married couple.

To be eligible for the program, a person must also be at least 65 years of age and a Pennsylvania resident for at least 90 days prior to the date of application.

This eligibility expansion would be the first since 2004. PACENET, as well as the PACE program which serves people at income levels below PACENET, is funded by proceeds from the Pennsylvania Lottery.

Causer noted the bill also would allow for medication synchronization, which is the coordination of prescription drug filling or refilling by a pharmacy or physician for patients taking two or more medications.

Synchronization has been shown to improve the likelihood of the patient following his or her medication schedule, and it makes it easier on people who may have difficulty getting out to pick up their medications.

The measure is awaiting the governor’s signature to become law.

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