There’s been a lot of confusion about the health care debate and who’s supporting what. AARP’s goal remains the same of the last 50 years: We’re fighting for our members.

Right now, we’re fighting to protect Medicare benefits, to guarantee members won’t be denied coverage because of health or age and prevent anyone from coming between members and their doctors. Specifically, we are working to strengthen Medicare by reducing waste (paying insurance company subsidies, fraudulent billing), and improving benefits (closing Part D doughnut hole, reducing patient costs for preventive care, providing follow-up care to reduce re-hospitalizations).

AARP is also fighting to protect consumers by ending discrimination by insurance companies. On behalf of 20,000 Mainers ages 50 to 64 who don’t have health insurance, AARP is working to prevent insurance companies from charging more because of age. Similarly, we’re fighting to ensure nobody is denied coverage because of a pre-existing condition or gets dropped from their insurance if they get sick.

We’re also fighting to lower prescription costs through price negotiation; allowing safe, legal importation of prescriptions from abroad; and permitting the sale of generic versions of biologic drugs — costly medications for diseases such as cancer and multiple sclerosis.

AARP’s mission is to make our members’ voices heard in national debates that affect them. That’s why we’ve made it clear to members of Congress that we will fight with the strength of our nearly 40 million members against any proposal to cut benefits or increase out-of-pocket costs for seniors.

Nancy Kelleher, State Director, AARP Maine.

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