The new Medicare drug discount cards will save seniors a whopping $6.4 billion, according to a study commissioned by The Business Roundtable.

For the full drug benefit that begins in January 2006, BRT estimates seniors will save another $17.7 billion in the first year alone. And these estimates are conservative.

The BRT provides a nice online tool to view state-by-state breakdowns of the savings.

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A national expert on Medicaid and Medicare, Kip Piper, MA, FACHE is a prominent consultant, speaker, and writer. Kip advises life sciences firms, major healthcare providers, state Medicaid agencies, health insurers, and investment firms. With 30 years’ federal, state, and private sector experience, Kip Piper is president of the Health Results Group, LLC, strategic advisory firm and CEO of Medonomics, Inc, a nonprofit research organization dedicated to improving healthcare value and decision making. For more, please visit KipPiper.com. Follow on Twitter @KipPiper. Connect on LinkedIn.