A 64-year-old man has been charged with robbing the Key Bank branch in Roy, Utah. The man told officials that he robbed the bank because he did not have the money to pay for the medications that he needed.
Glenn Douglas Mower was charged in the Second District Court with robbery, which is a second-degree felony. According to officials, Mower admitted to police that he entered the Key Bank branch located at 5201 S. 1900 West in Roy on Monday. He carried with him a white paper bag and instructed a teller to fill the bag with money.
The teller filled the bag and Mower picked up the money and left the bank. He then walked to the motel next door and entered his room. It is unclear if Mower rented the room for the robbery or if he was residing there.
Mower was identified as the bank robber by a motel employee after he viewed a surveillance photo of the crime. Police went to his room and demanded that he exit the room, which he did.
According to a probable cause statement, after arriving at the police station Mower informed the police that “he was having a rough time and did not believe he was going to live much longer.” He went on to tell the officers that he was suffering from unspecified “health issues and did not have the money to obtain the medications he needed.”
Police were able to quickly locate the stolen money hidden in a nightstand drawer in Mower’s hotel room.
As the Trump Administration and Congress weigh policy options to address the ever-rising costs of prescription drugs, a fourth of people taking prescriptions (24%) and seniors taking drugs (23%) say it is difficult for them to afford their medications, a new poll by KFF Health Tracking reports,
The poll shows that the groups most likely to report difficulties affording their medications include “people with monthly drug costs of $100 or more (58%), in fair or poor health (49%), with annual incomes less than $40,000 (35%), or taking at least four drugs monthly (35%). Three in ten 50-64-year-olds report problems affording drugs. This group takes more prescriptions on average than younger people but isn’t old enough to qualify for Medicare and its drug benefit.”
The poll also shows that “in addition to difficulty affording prescriptions, about three in ten (29%) of all adults report not taking their medicines as prescribed at some point in the past year because of the cost. This includes about one in five who say they didn’t fill a prescription (19%) or took an over-the-counter drug instead (18%) and about one in 10 (12%) who say they cut pills in half or skipped a dose. Three in ten of those who report not taking their medicines say their condition got worse as a result (8% of the public overall).”
Millions of adults in the U.S. skip their medications due to the high price tags, millions more go completely without the medicine that they need according to a Harvard Health report, and pharmaceutical prices are jacked up about three times higher here than anywhere else in the world.
Higher deductibles, higher prescription copays, and even limits on what drugs are covered by insurance; all can take their toll on affordability. While pharmaceutical companies try to offset this with rebates to insurance companies and pharmacy benefit managers, but these savings are not passed down to patients.
People, especially children and the elderly, should never have to choose between eating this week or getting their medication. It truly is time for Medicare for all.