Mary Bennett is a retiree in her early 70’s from Charlottesville, Virginia, is a breast cancer survivor with little retirement savings and big health care expenses.
Like millions of seniors all over America, Mary takes Eliquis, a widely prescribed blood-thinner that is among the most expensive prescriptions in Medicare Part D. Mary takes Eliquis to address the risk of stroke due to atrial fibrillation that she likely developed as a side effect from the radiation treatment she received for her cancer nearly 20 years ago.
Mary has a hard time keeping up with the climbing cost of her medicines. In 2017 and 2018, she paid about $100 out of pocket for her Medicare Part D prescriptions. After she started on Eliquis, her costs jumped to $667 in 2019. Half of that amount was the $389 she paid for a 90-day supply of Eliquis. By 2022, she was paying $1459 a year out of pocket for Eliquis.
Medicare has chosen Eliquis as one of the top ten drugs for negotiations over price under the new Medicare reform law to lower prices. That finally offers hope to Mary and millions of others who take the drug that their prescription will be more affordable in the future–but patients and advocates must keep pushing to ensure the law is implemented on time and with a real commitment to cost-savings for seniors.