Welcome Medicare Nation! We have a very distinguished guest with us today - Congressman Alan Grayson from the 9th Congressional District in Orlando, FL. Congressman Grayson is here to talk about the bill he recently introduced in Congress, HR3308: Seniors Have Eyes, Ears and Teeth too!
Congressman Grayson lost his Father in 2000, and in the last years of his life, he had a broken front tooth. This is when Congressman Grayson realized that Medicare arbitrarily excludes certain items for Seniors that are very important for their quality of life. After he researched the Medicare details, he realized there were 2 sentences in the legislation that stated, “No care for Eyes and Ears”, and “No care for Teeth” for Seniors.
To rectify this situation, Congressman Grayson introduced a simple bill that just strikes those 2 exceptions from the statute. He feels this is a common sense solution to a problem that affects so many Seniors.
Treating problems with eyes and teeth, can actually be a preventative measure to mitigate much more serious issues like heart disease and blindness, the treatment of which would require a much higher reimbursement from Medicare. Congressman Grayson felt there needs to be a common sense solution to dealing with these normal issues of the ears, eyes and teeth, which are a natural part of aging.
Why has care for eyes, ears and teeth been excluded from Medicare from its inception?
The government is cheap and looks for any way to cut costs. It is indefensible and nothing more than broken promises, for the sake of saving a few bucks. Only circumstances with a medical illness or injury to these body parts would be covered by Medicare, but basic care for routine examinations are not covered.
What would be covered if this bill passes?
The goal is to catch problems while they are small, before they become a bigger problem, and thus a bigger expense for Medicare.
What are the chances of it passing?
We have 76 co-sponsors for this bill, within 2 days of introducing it. I think Congress members overwhelmingly understand that this is something that needs to be provided. Realistically, it will probably not make it for a vote this round. However, many times issues like this have to be brought up again and again, before we can make a difference.
Congressman Alan Grayson is running for Senate on the platform that “Seniors Deserve A Raise!” He realizes that Seniors have been cheated far too long. From the promises that have not been kept, to the double taxation on Social Security, he realizes that it is time to take a stand and treat Seniors with fairness and dignity.
Resources from the show
HR3308 Seniors Have Eyes Ears and Teeth Bill
Alan Grayson introduces to Congress- Seniors have Eyes, Ears and Teeth Bill Video
Congressman Alan Grayson Website
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