Letter to Editor: Senate Drug Import Bill Will Not Reverse Past Mistakes

The prices of prescription drugs are a travesty. I know it personally. My late husband, Jon, paid $ 500 for a two week supply of his cancer medication. And that’s not the whole story. Medicare paid the remaining $ 9,500 for these 14 pills. We and Medicare (i.e. taxpayers) have been bombed.

Now for the senses. Susan Collins and Chuck Grassley are co-sponsorship, with 10 others, a bill to import cheaper drugs from Canada. I can’t help but think we’d be in a better place if these two Senators, and nearly all Republicans in Congress, hadn’t made a pact with the devil (Big Pharma) by vote for the Law of 2003 to give seniors coverage for prescription drugs, exactly what President George W. Bush needed to be re-elected.

What is relevant today is that this bill prohibited negotiating with pharmaceutical companies to obtain lower prices and to import cheaper drugs from Canada and elsewhere. “Pharmaceutical lobbyists drafted the bill,” a Republican Told “60 minutes” after. Big Pharma has held us captive ever since.

How many people have suffered and / or died in almost 20 years? How many parents have struggled to find medicine for their suffering children? Mary Ann Cumming (“Letter to the Editor: Principals Deserve Access to Affordable Medication”) and Sabrina Burbeck (“Commentary: Making Health Care Work for Maine Families Like Mine”) spoke wrote May 4 on the effects of high prices.

Actions have consequences. For shame!

I mention Collins and Grassley because they are the only two people who voted for the 2003 law who are still in power and who are currently sponsoring Canada’s drug importation bill.

Donna Halvorsen
South Portland

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