ICYMI: Conservatives Push Back on Medicare Distortions

Conservatives are not allowing outrageous claims made by the left on Medicare reform to go unanswered.  The resources below will help untangle the left’s Medicare spin.

MUST READ: Heritage: Debunking Medicare Reform Myths

“Premium support would ‘privatize’ Medicare.” Medicare is highly privatized already. Moffit points out that almost all of Medicare is comprised of private agents or institutions that are financed by the public and have to follow public rules. In addition, Medicare Advantage (MA), which currently enrolls 27 percent of all Medicare beneficiaries, is comprised of private health plans that compete against each other, and the Medicare prescription drug benefit is provided through private plans as well.

“Premium support would leave Medicare patients at the mercy of rapacious insurance companies.” Moffit writes that “every major premium-support proposal would retain or reinforce insurance rules that prevent ‘cherry picking’ or coverage denials based on health status.”

“Premium support would increase beneficiary premiums.” Moffit explains, “A transition from a defined benefit to a defined contribution would not necessarily increase premiums over current projections.” The government contribution toward premiums would be based on competitive bidding among health plans in the market, tying it to real health spending trends.

 “Lower-income seniors would be vulnerable to higher out-of-pocket costs.” The Heritage plan, like all other major premium-support plans, would cap out-of-pocket spending for low-income Medicare beneficiaries. For example, as Moffit points out, the premium-support plan in the most recent (fiscal year 2013) House budget resolution would still allow Medicaid to step in and pay the extra out-of-pocket costs for eligible seniors and would provide a fully funded account to help offset increased costs for other low-income beneficiaries who are not eligible for Medicaid.

Read the entire rebuttal.

Additional Resources:
Washington Times: No Ducking Medicare Anymore
National Review: Ryan and His Panicky Critics
Forbes: Ten Myths in the Medicare Ad Wars
National Review: CAP Action Dowdifies CBO Medicare Report
USA Today: Medicare drama more hype than reality


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