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Our Latest Efforts to

Stand Up for YOU!

June

Attended the BIO international conference in Philadelphia.

Met with the staff of Senator Burr (R – NC), Senator Collins (R – ME), Senator Cassidy (R – LA) and the Senate HELP (Health, Education, Labor and Pensions) Committee FDA Policy Advisor, encouraging them to hold a hearing concerning the FDA’s lack of regulations and guidelines concerning biosimilars.

Wrote a letter to Inova Fair Oaks CEO, John Fitzgerald, in response to his commentary in the Fairfax Times in support of Virginia’s COPN law, which has left the state’s patients with an inadequate health care system. RetireSafe further emphasized that Virginia’s outdated COPN law threatens access to high-quality and affordable healthcare for everyone in the state, and that leaders in the Virginia General Assembly must work to reform the law.  (Read RetireSafe’s letter here)

RetireSafe workers collected petitions to encourage Virginia law makers to reform the outdated and competition restricting Certificate of Public Need law in their state.

(read more about COPN here)

May

Attended ASCO (American Society of Clinical Oncology) Conference in Chicago.  Attended seminars focused on future payment models and the closing of community oncology clinics.

Met with two different groups to discuss the 21st Century Cures legislation that is coming our of sub committee.

Visited with the staff of Senator Isakson (R, GA), Senator Casey (D, PA) and Senator Nelson (D, FL) to discuss FICA tax issue.

April

Reviewed a program that eliminates the need to call in multiple prescription refills, reduces the number of trips to the pharmacy and provides an opportunity for patients to meet one-on-one with their pharmacist on a monthly basis to discuss their medications.  Click here to see a video on this new program. Click here to find out more details about this great program.

Attended the fourth annual National Forum on the Future of Health Care organized by the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN).

Met with staff of Senator Thune (R, SD) and Senator Coats (R, IN) to discuss Medicare rebates and proposed cuts to Medicare Advantage.

March

Attended a hearing called by the Energy & Commerce Health Subcommittee concerning drug discounts given to qulaified entities in support of indigent and patients without insurance (340B).
 
Sent this letter signed by 20 organizations to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) concerning cuts to Medicare Advantage proposed by CMS.
 
Met withSean Cavanaugh  Deputy Administrator and Director of the Center for Medicare at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and Jefferey Kelman Chief Medical Officer at CMS to discuss continued access to pain medication while discouraging its use by addicts.
 
Met with the following House Member's staff to discuss preserving Medicare Part D, Representative Lance, Jenkins, Meehan and Collins.
 
Began a project to Preserve Medicare Advantage.  Our first step is to fight CMS on their proposed cuts to Medicare Advantage. (see comments on our Feedback panel on the right side of the web page).
 
Met with Representative Sarbanes and Representative Cardenas staff about 340B and 21st Century Cures. (Representative Cardenas received our Standing Up For America’s Seniors Leadership award, see it here).

February

Met with the staff director of the Senate Committee on Aging to discuss prompt pay legislation which encourages the maintenance of community based services.

Conference call with Congressman Steve Scalise, the House Majority Whip, on the status of the Department of Homeland Security funding and the questions on dealing with immigration.

Met with Chairman Upton’s staff on the Energy and Commerce Committee concerning the closing of community oncology practices and their new legislation, 21st Century Cures.

Met with health and senior advocates concerning cuts to Medicare Advantage and the impact on older Americans.

Met with concerned activists led by the Arthritis Foundation on how to preserve effective communication between the patient, the pharmacist and the doctor when dispensing medication, especially biologics and biosimilars.

Presented our “Standing Up for America’s Seniors Leadership Award” to Senator Cory Gardner (see Senator Gardner's award here).

January

Met with Kim Corbin, Health Counsel for Senator Debbie Stabenow to review Medicare issues.

Attended a meet and greet with the House’s youngest member, newly elected Elise Stefanik.

Met with Senator Gardner’s and Senator Cassidy’s staff concerning the Prompt Payment legislation.  This legislation that will help retain community access for healthcare. (See Legislation here)

Testified at the FDA’s advisory board hearing concerning an application to manufacture a biosimilar for the drug NEUPOGEN. (See statement here).

December

Met with Senator Pat Toomey’s staff to review Medicare issues.

Met with Senator Orin Hatch to review the PARTS (Promoting Automotive Repair, Trade, and Sales) Act.

 

Met with Senator Portman’s staff concerning efforts to stop the closing of community oncology practices.

 

Attended a meeting led by Chairman Fred Upton (R/MI) and Rep. Diana DeGette (D/CO) as the discussed their new legislative initiative, 21st Century Cures, a bipartisan approach to improve medical innovation.

 

Presented our “Standing Up for America’s Seniors Leadership Award” to Congressman Dan Lipinski and Leonard Lance. (see Congressman Lipinski award here, see Congressman Lance award here).

 

 

 

President's Message
Supreme Court Fails to Halt Obamacare

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The Supreme Court today ruled that subsidies granted under the Affordable Care Act (often called Obamacare) are not dependent on whether the insurance was obtained from a state based exchange or the Federal exchange.  President Obama praised it as a victory for America; former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee called the King v. Burwell decision “an out-of-control act of judicial tyranny.”

It was a long shot from the beginning to think that the Supreme Court had the fortitude to overturn Obamacare on the strength of four words, “established by the state”, in a 900 page law.  The 6 to 3 decision indicated that the Supreme Court believed that the intent of the law was not to grant subsidies on the basis of where the coverage was obtained.  Many believe that it wasn’t the purview of the court to discern intent but to analyze and decide on the black letter content of the law.  The fact of the matter is - the law continues as implemented.  So . . . what does this mean for older Americans?

It means that hundreds of billions of dollars is still going to be extracted from Medicare to pay for Obamacare.  It means that doctors will reduce the number of, or stop altogether taking, Medicare patients.  It means that options for care will continue to shrink and co-pays and co-insurance costs will continue to increase. It means that all the reasons that RetireSafe opposed Obamacare continue on unabated.

RetireSafe will continue to support efforts to repeal Obamacare, it seems that the only approach now is through Congress and the election of leaders who will stop this government funded takeover of healthcare.  Until that happens we will continue to work toward reducing the severity of the laws impact on you.  We will fight for access, work toward eliminating the bureaucratic, unelected, Medicare cutting, IPAB panel and fight to reduce the taxes and regulations that threaten to separate you from your doctor.

We will still periodically ask for your help to answer surveys, give your opinions, write to your local papers and contact your Representatives in Congress.  These are the ways you can help fight for preserving and even broadening your healthcare choices, preserving access and maintaining the safety and affordability of your healthcare.  We can’t do this without your help. Don’t be discouraged, we may have lost a battle but we can still win the war.
 

 More thoughts from President Phillips...

 

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I thank you for the update… I’ve never been one to accept defeat, but for the first time in my life I feel like the spine of America has been broken.  I’m seeing the Federal government taking control over every aspect of our lives… education, health care, EPA, and a soon to be assault on our freedom of religion.  We have lost our check and balance system, and the government is running rampant over our rights and freedoms. How is voting going to help if the polls are stacked.  Please tell me how we can get this runaway train to stop. I want my children and grandchildren to know how to fight this political machine called the government.  I’m beginning to think there are no longer two major political parties anymore…just one big political machine gunning for a one world government. There have been too many opportunities to shut Obama down, and no one seems to be fighting back.  Please give me any words of encouragement you can muster… please.

Thank you. - Marian
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