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Everyone should take time to read the special report on medical bills published March 4 in Time magazine. This article clearly states why U.S. medical costs are out of control and some ways to start pushing things in the other direction without sacrificing quality.
Two major cost escalators in Medicare are as follows:
1. Congress has passed a law that forbids Medicare from negotiating drug prices with the pharmaceutical companies.
2. Congress has not allowed Medicare to conduct competitive bidding for durable medical equipment, e.g., wheelchairs and diabetic supplies.
Congress should immediately undo these two laws. Allow negotiation by Medicare for drugs and allow competitive bidding for durable medical equipment.
These alone would save billions of dollars for Medicare and for us, the taxpayers. Moreover, negotiation is in the spirit of free enterprise.
Upper St. Clair
First Published March 7, 2013 12:00 am