If Medicare didn't cover penis pumps, U.S. taxpayers would save $44 million a year

If Medicare didn't cover penis pumps, U.S. taxpayers would save $44 million a year
(Image credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

House Republicans don't think Big Brother should be funding erectile dysfunction treatment, and have written a bill that could end Medicare funding for "vacuum pump systems" (a.k.a. penis pumps) and save $450 million worth of taxpayer money over the next decade.

The Washington Times reports that the government paid for nearly 475,000 vacuum pump systems between 2006 and 2011. What's more, analysis found that Medicare "grossly overpaid" for the systems — shelling out more than $450 per pump, or twice as much as what other agencies paid. Investigators also found that buying the devices online would cost only about $165 per system.

Subscribe to The Week

Escape your echo chamber. Get the facts behind the news, plus analysis from multiple perspectives.

SUBSCRIBE & SAVE
https://cdn.mos.cms.futurecdn.net/flexiimages/jacafc5zvs1692883516.jpg

Sign up for The Week's Free Newsletters

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

Sign up
To continue reading this article...
Continue reading this article and get limited website access each month.
Get unlimited website access, exclusive newsletters plus much more.
Cancel or pause at any time.
Already a subscriber to The Week?
Not sure which email you used for your subscription? Contact us