Saturday, Apr 19, 2014

Letters to the editor, May 6

Hernando Today
Published:   |   Updated: May 7, 2013 at 03:36 PM

Speak up

A notice appeared in the Feb. 28th Federal Register that would seem to have a tremendous impact on anyone who relies on insurance to pay all or part of their prescription drug costs.

I am referring to FDA Docket No. FDA-2012-N-0171. This docket, if approved, would place certain drugs for chronic illnesses, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and others from requiring a prescription to an Over the Counter status (OTC).

I won't attempt to argue the medical wisdom of this policy change, I leave that to those who are knowledgeable in that field. But I do wish to point out the potential increase in cost to patients.

While at first glance this would seem to be a cost savings by not requiring a doctor visit to obtain a prescription, these savings would be totally offset by the increased cost of medications.

At present, insurance carriers do not reimburse for OTC medications. This would move many of the medications, which are now prescribed for these conditions, to a 100 percent cost to the user.

Many seniors and low income families would be forced to forgo some of the very medications which maintain their very existence. I can only wonder if this is not an attempt by HHS to move patients from their physician's office to make room for the 30 million or so that will enter the system through the Affordable Care Act.

I, for one, take some extremely expensive medications to control my diabetes, blood pressure and cholesterol, for 2011 the total cost from my drug plan was close to $13,000, my insurance paid 90 percent of that amount.

Without insurance coverage for these medications I would be forced to forgo these in favor less expensive ones which have already shown to have unpleasant side effects, or at worst case to forgo them entirely.

The deadline for public comments to the FDA is May 7, and their requirements for public comments are cumbersome to say the least.

I would ask that everyone who would be affected by this regulation contact their representatives in Washington, D.C. as soon as possible and ask them to rein in the authority of the Secretary of HHS to implement this policy and insure that all people are able to take safe, and effective medications without having to go broke in the process.

Harry Chamberlain

Spring Hill

Support our Israeli brothers

We have a president who would throw good friends like Israel under the bus. Well when Great Britian was threatened by the Nazis, Americans rallied and enlisted in the RAF to defend our most valued ally.

Now I say even though I did a tour in Vietnam, I will stand a post with our Israeli brothers. I say this not because it is self serving but because there is no Israeli soldier who would not do the same for U.S.

In my opinion Islam is not a religion it is a cult led by those who live in the 10th Century. Let's not forget it's the 21st Century.

George Stansbury



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