For decades, Medicare and Social Security have been economic pillars in supporting our middle class seniors. Granite State seniors have worked hard their entire lives as they raised their families, strengthened our country, and paid into these vital programs.
I am committed to working towards sensible steps to ensure Social Security’s solvency long into the future. There are almost 200,000 people over the age of 65 in New Hampshire – a significant population that deserves the respect and attention of its representatives and lawmakers. Social Security benefits alone add more than $2 billion dollars annually to the New Hampshire economy. Social Security has lifted millions of senior citizens out of poverty and provided financial security for generations of widowed spouses, children, and people with disabilities.
Ensuring seniors and individuals with disabilities have access to quality and affordable care is one of my primary concerns. By enacting smart fiscal reforms we can preserve the future of Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security without compromising the benefits on which senior citizens and vulnerable families rely.
That is why I am taking the following steps to stand up for New Hampshire’s seniors:
- Defending and Strengthening the Social Safety Net: Our nation’s commitment to Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security reflects our commitment to the sick, elderly, and vulnerable among us. Shortly after taking the oath of office, I told the President that I will reject cuts to benefits for Americans in these critical programs. I also am a cosponsor of the Seniors Have Eyes, Ears, and Teeth Act (H.R. 3308), which would expand Medicare coverage to include eyeglasses, hearing aids, and dental care; as well as a cosponsor to the FAST Act (H.R.2799), which would expand access to telehealth services for stroke victims under Medicare to urban and suburban areas.
- Supporting Independent Living: I am a cosponsor of the Senior Accessible Housing Act (H.R. 5254), which would create a nonrefundable personal tax credit of up to $30,000 for senior citizens who modify their residences to enhance their ability to remain living safely, independently, and comfortably in their home.
- Standing up for Social Security and Veterans Benefits: I will not vote to cut benefits to these vital social programs. Working together, both parties must ensure that New Hampshire families can continue to count on these programs for generations to come. I am a cosponsor of a resolution (H.Con.Res 34) expressing that the Chained Consumer Price Index, which would lower benefits for seniors, should not be used to calculate cost of living adjustments for Social Security and veterans benefits.
- Negotiating for Lower Prescription Drug Prices: One reform we should make is to allow the federal government to negotiate for cheaper prescription drug prices for Medicare beneficiaries. I am a cosponsor of the Medicare Prescription Drug Price Negotiation Act (H.R. 1102), which would make this common sense and fiscally responsible reform.
- Cracking Down on Fraud: I am a cosponsor of the Savings, Accountability, Value, and Efficiency (SAVE) Act (H.R. 1999), bipartisan legislation to cut wasteful federal spending by tens of billions of dollars. Among its many reforms, this bill would empower the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to better find and eliminate fraud through data collection and analysis. In addition, I voted yes on the Ensuring Terminated Providers are Removed from Medicaid and CHIP Act (H.R. 3716), which would require states to notify the Health and Human Services Department of health care providers who are terminated from the State’s Medicaid or Children’s Health Insurance (CHIP) program because of fraud.
More on Protecting Seniors
Washington, DC – Today, Rep. Annie Kuster (NH-02) released the following statement after voting to support bipartisan legislation that would prevent a government shutdown at the end of the month. The bill passed the House with a 359-57 vote.
(Washington, DC)— Today, U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, and Maggie Hassan (D-NH) and Representatives Annie Kuster (NH-02) and Chris Pappas (NH-01) announced $11.4 million in funding through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act to help New Hampshire nursing homes during the COVID-19 pandemic. Specifically, the funding will help hire and train staff, as well as purchase PPE and testing.
Washington, DC - This week, Rep. Annie Kuster (NH-02) and Rep. Adrian Smith (NE-03) introduced the Reducing Unnecessary Senior Hospitalizations (RUSH) Act of 2020 in the House of Representatives. This bipartisan, bicameral legislation would increase access and use of telehealth services in skilled nursing facilities. Senators John Thune (R-SD) and Ben Cardin (D-MD) introduced the Senate companion version of the bill.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Representative Annie Kuster (NH-02) joined her colleagues, Representatives Donna Shalala (D-FL), Larry Buschon, MD (R-IN) and Phil Roe, MD (R-TN), to introduce the Senior Immunization Act of 2019, bipartisan legislation that would eliminate out-of-pocket costs for vaccines covered under Medicare Part D and improve vaccines awareness and education for beneficiaries.
Are You Covered for 2020?
WASHINGTON — Last week, Congresswoman Annie Kuster (NH-02) joined Representatives Haley Stevens (MI-11), Jahana Hayes (CT-05) and Terri Sewell (AL-07) to introduce the Maximizing Drug Coverage for Low-Income Seniors Act (H.R. 4669). This bill seeks to improve the Medicare enrollment process and lower out-of-pocket costs by ensuring that beneficiaries are enrolled in a Part D plan that best meets their needs.
(Westmoreland, NH)-Yesterday, Congresswoman Annie Kuster (NH-02) toured the Maplewood Nursing Home, which is currently under renovation, and saw the new, 63,000-square-foot wing that is expected to be finished in October. Kuster also met with Maplewood Staff and Cheshire County government officials to view the architectural plans for the new building and renovations and discuss expanding access to quality healthcare for seniors.
(Washington, DC) – Today, Congresswoman Annie Kuster (NH-02) joined her colleagues to co-sponsor H.R. 945, the Mental Health Access Improvement Act of 2019. The bill will stop people from aging out of mental health care when they qualify for Medicare and ensure marriage and family therapy and mental health counselor services are covered. Kuster has heard from mental and behavioral health providers throughout her district that more resources are needed to help Granite Staters obtain mental healthcare.
(Washington, DC) – Yesterday, Rep. Kuster (NH-02) voted to pass HR 1994, the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act (SECURE Act) to help Americans save more for a secure retirement and deliver a critically needed fix for military survivors and families facing tax hikes as a result of provisions in the GOP tax law. Additionally, this legislation makes it easier for small businesses to offer retirement plans for employees, increases retirement benefit opportunities for home care workers, and expands worker eligibility for 401(k) plans.