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AARP Responds to Erroneous Article

James Finkelstein, Publisher
The Hill
733 15th St NW
Ste 1140
Washington, DC 20005

Dear Mr. Finkelstein,

This morning, The Hill published an article, "AARP edges away from drug imports," that is a blatant mischaracterization of AARP's position on an issue of critical importance to millions of Americans.

AARP has and continues to support legislation to allow for the legal importation of drugs from Canada and stated as much in yesterday's interview with your publication. The Hill conversely reported that AARP was edging away from that commitment. This is not the first time The Hill has completely mischaracterized AARP's positions or misstated the facts.

The Hill claims that AARP, "concluded that seniors who enroll in a low-cost Medicare prescription drug plan would save more in drug costs this year than if they were to buy the same drugs in Canada." The message of our AARP Bulletin article is that it is valuable for all Medicare beneficiaries to do the math and see what option is best for them. It's also important to remember that prescription drug importation will benefit all consumers, not solely Medicare beneficiaries. Though there are millions of Americans who are eligible to enroll in the new Medicare Part D benefit, there are millions more - including more than 45 million uninsured Americans who lack access to affordable prescription drugs. One does not have to choose between support for legal importation from Canada and a new Medicare drug plan. They are not mutually exclusive.

This is a classic example of searching for controversy where none exists and selectively quoting individuals to make their case. AARP's purpose is to inform the public and to find multiple ways for Americans to afford the prescription medications they require. These issues are too important to Americans to get this wrong.


Mark Kitchens
AARP Director of Media Relations

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