SeniorCare Shortfall

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

The state's prescription drug discount program for seniors has attracted thousands fewer people than expected.

That's created a projected $21 million surplus -- and leaves the program ripe for cuts as lawmakers grapple with the state's budget deficit.

Senior citizen groups fear weak participation could make it easy for Gov. Doyle to scale back SeniorCare as he tries to solve the state's projected $2.6 billion deficit.

The groups maintain SeniorCare projections were grossly exaggerated and many seniors still don't know about the discount program.

Only about 73,000 seniors had signed up for the program by the end of the year. State analysts predicted about 88,000 would have enrolled by then.

SeniorCare offers discounts on prescription drugs on a sliding income scale.