WASHINGTON COUNTY - U.S. Rep. Roscoe Bartlett contends that the federal government's new Medicare reforms are complicated. So the congressman hosted a meeting Monday at Robinwood Medical Center aimed at helping ease confusion over the new drug discount program for Medicare patients.
"This is very bewildering," Bartlett said. "You've got to have somebody to hold your hand."
Though he said he voted for the Medicare Prescription Drug Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003 because it included a provision for health savings accounts (pre-tax accounts for individuals to save money for health-care expenses), Bartlett said the legislation "was not my choice."
He said that rather than addressing the needs of what he estimated were 25 percent of Medicare recipients who most needed immediate help with their health-care expenses, "the bill addressed the whole universe" of patients "and created a whole big, new entitlement program."