Beebe Asks State to Intervene in Medicare Problems

JANUARY 9, 2006 - Posted at 3:46 p.m. CST

LITTLE ROCK, AR - Arkansas Attorney General Mike Beebe asked state health officials today to intervene to make sure the state's poor and elderly receive the drugs they were promised through the federal Medicare program.

In a letter to Director John Selig of the state Department of Health and Human Services, Beebe described the new prescription drug program as a "nightmare" for senior citizens and pharmacists.  Beebe said his office has heard from consumers and pharmacists across the state about problems when attempting to fill prescriptions under the new drug program.  Beebe said many pharmacists have provided customers with the medications they need even though federal assistance has been wrongly denied.

At least four states have already taken action to temporarily use state funds to fill the gaps left by the prescription drug plan.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)