Lawmakers Hold Hearings on Medicare Problems
February 2, 2006 -- Mike Siegel is taking a cue from many of his counterparts at Burbank's Joslyn Adult Center and steering clear of the government's new prescription plan for seniors.
On Capitol Hill today, lawmakers held a hearing with the medicare administration to find out why so many people are having so many problems.
The program was supposed to take the hassle and expense out of the system for seniors and poor Americans.
Mike McClellan, the man charged with managing the program, conceded there are problems, but said with time the plan can be made to work.
The government "makes no excuses for the problems. They are important, they are ours to solve and we are finding and fixing them," McClellan said.
In the meantime, the Bush administration has ordered private providers to extend emergency coverage to the most extreme cases for the next 60 days.
The government also extended the deadline for seniors to enroll the program. Instead of May 15th, seniors now have until July 15th.
Administrators hope that'll give folks like Mike Siegel more time to look the plan over. But he and many other seniors say going with the new plan is just not in the cards.
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