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2008 Survey of Hawai'i Residents Age 50+ on Prescription Drug Affordability

AARP's Hawai'i State Office, in response to its commitment to ensure affordable, quality health and long-term care for all residents, commissioned this survey to explore Hawai'i residents' concerns about and experiences regarding prescription drug affordability. The survey found that:

  • Like many Americans age 50 and older, Hawai'i residents are concerned about the rising cost of prescription drugs, with those under 65 being significantly more concerned than those 65+.
  • 46% of Hawai'i residents age 50-64 claim their out-of-pocket prescription drug costs have increased over the past five years, compared with only 38% of those 65 and older.
  • One out of ten residents have delayed filling a prescription or decided not to fill it at all because of the cost, have taken a smaller dosage of medication in order to make it last longer, or have cut back on food, fuel, or utilities in order to afford the cost of a prescription.
  • Despite the majority of Hawai'i residents reporting some type of health care coverage that pays all or part of the cost of their prescription drugs, a significant portion spend upwards of $50 per month on prescription drugs.
  • Though there is no simple solution to arresting the rising cost of prescription drugs, the majority of Hawai'i residents would support the state negotiating with drug manufacturers to lower prices.

Telephone interviews were conducted in December 2007 and January 2008 with 777 randomly selected Hawai'i residents age 50 and older. For more information about this survey, please contact John C. Fries at 202-434-6313. (19 pages)

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