President Donald Trump announced on Thursday that Americans in the Medicare program for the elderly and disabled will be sent $200 discount cards for prescription drugs just weeks ahead of the 2020 presidential election.
“The America First Healthcare Plan includes another historic provision to benefit our great seniors,” Trump said at his health care address in Charlotte, North Carolina.
“Under my plan, 33 million Medicare beneficiaries will soon receive a card in the mail containing $200 that they can use to help pay for prescription drugs,” he said. “Nobody’s seen this before.”
“The cards will be mailed out in the coming weeks. I will always take care of our wonderful senior citizens.”
“Joe Biden won’t be doing this,” he added.
Trump now claims a $200 cash card will be sent out to 33 million people on Medicare pic.twitter.com/tEazRLvTNR
— NowThis (@nowthisnews) September 24, 2020
It wasn’t immediately clear under what authority the Trump administration was providing the cards and Trump didn’t elaborate. Assuming they are sent to 33 million Medicare beneficiaries, the figure Trump used, the cards would cost about $6.6 billion.
Bloomberg reports: “Money for the cards will be drawn from a demonstration program Medicare uses to test new payment systems and other projects, and the cost will be offset by savings generated from new price cuts Trump has ordered for drugs bought by Medicare, according to a White House official. The official didn’t immediately elaborate.”
The president has trailed Biden with voters over 65 in a number of recent polls, struggling with a voting bloc that in the past couple of elections has backed Republicans.