Although we may have temporarily been victorious with saving the Medicare Part D program, we must continue to protect it for Florida’s most vulnerable — our seniors and disabled adults.
We are fortunate that Gov. Rick Scott has come to the defense of our elders. He has learned firsthand and discussed the devastation that will ensue from an attack by the federal government on programs such as Part D and Medicare Advantage. We must stand behind him and our Florida legislators who protect these important programs.
Our frail and vulnerable seniors in Florida have paid into the system and have earned the benefits of the Medicare Advantage and Medicare Part D. These programs are cost effective and life saving. They have come in under budget and have increased the quality of life for our aging society and for the disabled, while allowing them to take the medication that their doctors prescribe, take part in preventive care programs, obtain exercise that keeps them mobile and keeps them from avoidable emergency room visits.
If the federal government makes cuts to these important programs, the state will be forced to pick up the costs associated with these services. The massive cuts to so many established programs in order to provide for new programs of unproven capability are questionable. These unfunded mandates will be a drain on the resources and budgets of our state. Florida leads states in fiscal responsibility and stability, but we will be unable to continue with constant attacks to cut existing established federal programs.
It is time for a logical, common-sense approach in Washington. We must ensure our legislators understand the importance of the Medicare Part D and Medicare Advantage programs in the lives of Florida’s seniors and disabled adults. We must support those who strongly stand in defense and support of these programs.