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Asian American Gays Surveyed

More than three-fourths of Asian Pacific American lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people have experienced discrimination based on their sexual orientation, according to a study by the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, an advocacy organization. As part of the largest study of this group ever undertaken, researchers surveyed 124 attendees at a regional LGBT conference and found that 82% had experienced such discrimination: 82% also had experienced discrimination based on their race or ethnicity, and 96% of respondents agreed that homophobia and transphobia is a problem within the Asian Pacific American community. "The lives of Asian Pacific American [LGBT] people involve a complex web of issues arising from being sexual, racial/ethnic, language, gender, immigrant, and economic minorities," said Glenn D. Magpantay, steering committee member of Gay Asian & Pacific Islander Men of New York.

Cost of New Drug Benefit

National health care spending costs will remain stable during the next 10 years, though public programs will account for half of total spending, in part because of the new Medicare Part D prescription drug benefit, according to a report by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The agency claims the drug benefit—which kicks in next January—is expected to "significantly" increase prescription drug use and reduce out-of-pocket spending for older patients without causing any major increase in the health care spending trend. However, the new benefit will result in a significant shift in funding from private payers and Medicaid to Medicare. Medicare spending is projected to grow almost 8% in 2004 and 8.5% in 2005, because of several changes in the program under the Medicare Modernization Act, such as positive physician updates and higher Medicare Advantage payment rates.

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