Center for American Progress Action

The Affordable Care Act and Medicare Saves Nevadans Hundreds of Thousands of Dollars on Health Care Costs

The Affordable Care Act and Medicare Saves Nevadans Hundreds of Thousands of Dollars on Health Care Costs

Read more stories on how recent legislation has benefited Americans

This collection features stories from people in Arizona, Georgia, Nevada, and New Hampshire whose lives have been improved by the legislation passed during the Biden administration’s first two years.

Rising prescription costs leave many older adults on Medicare with no choice but to go without their medications. For older adults in Nevada like Rick Buchanan, skipping medications is the only option.

Rick Buchanan wears a newspaper cap for a selfie.

Rick Buchanan is pictured in November 2017. (Photo credit: Rick Buchanan)

As a self-employed plumbing contractor, Rick lacked access to affordable health care for many years until the passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). After his colon ruptured, Rick received a lifesaving surgery through the ACA at an affordable cost, saving him hundreds of thousands of dollars. In the years since, Rick has enrolled in Medicare, but his health problems left him without a steady income for years. As a result, he has sometimes had to skip medications under his Medicare plan due to their cost. Rick is grateful to Congress for passing the Inflation Reduction Act, which extends ACA subsidies and will reduce prescription costs for older adults like him.

Soon after I got on Medicare, there were two meds my doctors told me I needed to start taking to reduce my A1C and glucose. I started taking them, but the copay for the two of them would have been $94 a month. And I simply didn’t have $94 a month to spare at the time, so I just didn’t take them. I don’t think anyone should have to not afford medication they’re prescribed while they’re on Medicare, which is why I think Medicare negotiation is a no-brainer. Rick Buchanan

The Medicare drug price negotiation in the Inflation Reduction Act is a historic step toward ensuring no American skips their medications due to the cost. Democrats in Congress prevailed over the demands of Big Pharma and delivered for the American people.