NACDS presses Congress to override veto of Medicare bill

ALEXANDRIA, Va. President Bush has vetoed the Medicare Improvement for Patients and Providers Act of 2008, H.R. 6331. This comes after the bill was overwhelmingly passed by the House of Representatives and then, with a returning Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., finally passed by the Senate.

In response to the veto, National Association of Chain Drug Stores president and chief executive officer Steve Anderson is asking Congress to override the veto. Anderson said that, “President Bush’s veto is disappointing. NACDS is already working to encourage members of the Senate and House of Representatives to preserve and even expand their overwhelming votes in favor of this legislation and quickly override this veto.”

Anderson also stated the importance of the bill saying, “It is critical that the pro-pharmacy measures in H.R. 6331 be enacted. These measures will delay Medicaid cuts to pharmacy reimbursements, encourage e-prescribing, protect patient access to diabetic supplies, and ensure prompt payment of Medicare pharmacy claims.”

He continued to say, “Without legislation to delay implementation of the new Average Manufacturer Price reimbursement formula under Medicaid, pharmacies will face devastating cuts. As a result, 11,000 pharmacies could be forced to close, and these pharmacies account for 300,000 jobs and $31 billion in economic activity nationwide.”

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