Merkley: Health Care Reform Improvements to Benefit America for Generations

Washington, D.C.
– The U.S. Senate passed improvements to the health care reform law Thursday afternoon, nearing the end of a 15-month journey to fix America’s broken health care system.  Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley made the following statement:

“Over the last year, I have heard countless horror stories from families who have been devastated by the broken health care system.  Earlier this week, the House completed work on major health care reform and today we finished the job by passing a package of important improvements.

“The improvements included in this bill will lower taxes for working families who have high health care expenses.  It will close the Medicare donut hole for seniors who have been financially strapped by high prescription drug costs.  And it will eliminate special deals for certain states.

“There are major challenges still on the horizon, including creating jobs, cleaning up Wall Street, and reclaiming our energy future – but today we can be proud to be part of real change that was generations in the making and will benefit this nation for generations to come.”

The final health care reform improvements bill is expected to receive quick passage in the House of Representatives.  The legislation also makes college more affordable by shifting $36 billion in federal funding from subsidizing banks making student loans to Pell Grants.