More than 63K Missouri seniors to lose prescription aid

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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. –  More than 63,000 low-income Missouri seniors are set to lose state assistance that helps them pay for prescription drugs.

Roughly a quarter of those who had been receiving aid will be cut off Saturday. Under the program, the state pays for half of low-income seniors’ prescription copays.

Lawmakers this year slashed the program in an attempt to save money. The change affects low-income seniors who make less than 185 percent of the federal poverty level but make too much to qualify for Medicaid. For one person, that’s between about $10,200 and $22,300 a year.

Legislative researchers estimate the cut will save about $13 million annually.

Advocates say the change will mean tough choices for seniors on fixed incomes and could mean more health care costs for the state later.