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No More Viagra From Medicaid For Sex Offenders

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It has recently come to attention that convicted sex offenders have been able to get Viagra and other similar drugs for erectiledysfunction from Medicaid.

Medicaid spends an estimated $38 million a year on these drugs. All but $2 million of this money is on Viagra itself. ”We live in a world of limited resources, and those dollars could be spent more wisely,” said chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, Senator Charles E. Grassley.

No More Viagra From Medicaid For Sex Offenders

New York Governor George Pataki has already cut all public funding for the drugs and has proposed that legislation allow the state to target only the convicted sex offenders. New York Daily News reports:

The ban stays, Pataki said, until the Legislature agrees to allow the state Insurance and Health Departments to access the complete list of Megan’s Law offenders. Only then can the state stop dangerous creeps on Medicaid and Medicare from getting free sex-boosting drugs, according to the governor.

Pataki’s move has immediate consequences for thousands of New Yorkers not only on Medicaid but also those enrolled in Family Health Plus, Healthy NY and the Elderly Pharmaceutical Insurance Coverage programs.

“This temporary ban will ensure that no sex offender receives these drugs at taxpayer expense while we push to pass legislation that will allow the Health and Insurance Departments to obtain the complete sex offender registry and put a targeted ban in place,” said Pataki.

In just New York and Florida, over 400 convicted sex offenders have received reimbursement for erectiledysfunction drugs. 198 have Viagra reimbursement from Medicaid after being convicted since 2000.

The bill itself has been cosponsored by Republican Senators Trent Lott of Mississippi, Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania, and John Ensign of Nevada.

”We really don’t think there are going to be many states that are going to be slow about finding a way to keep convicted sex offenders from getting erectiledysfunction drugs,” said AP quoted Medicaid Agency spokesman Gary Karr as saying.

In other Viagra related news, the FDA is in talks with Viagra maker Pfizer Inc. about a possible revision to Viagra’s label based on rare cases of blindness that have been reported in connection the drug.

Chris is a staff writer for WebProNews. Visit WebProNews for the latest ebusiness news.

No More Viagra From Medicaid For Sex Offenders
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