Letter To The Editor: Tampa Bay Times

By Shane Power, President of Watertree Health… 

Re: Prescription drugs increasingly unaffordable for seniors, AARP study says” (Feb 29):
February 29, 2016

Dollarphotoclub_78249158Thank you for publishing the story spotlighting the relentless rise in prescription drug costs. According to the latest AARP study of price trends, these increases have accelerated since 2007 and there may be no end in sight.  In the past seven years, the annual supply of a prescription drug doubled to an average cost of over $11,000—approximately three-quarters of the average yearly Social Security benefit.

Seniors are not the only ones being impacted. More Americans than ever are taking prescriptions, with almost 60 percent of them relying on drugs associated with obesity, blood pressure and cholesterol regulation.  They need these medications to live better and healthier lives—regardless of cost.  As noted in the story, prices for over 600 commonly used drugs, including generics, rose 9.4 percent alone in 2013. Put into perspective, drug costs outpaced the 2013 general inflation rate six times!

We have to ask ourselves. Are we taking care of our older generations? Are we making it nearly impossible for them to retire and take care of themselves?  Is our  country’s health care system failing every one of us when people cannot afford their medicines necessary to live healthy, productive lives?   

Shane Power
President, Watertree Health

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