Medicare as we know it is under attack.
Current efforts and proposals will privatize Medicare and increase costs.
Against the wishes of most Americans, some lawmakers want to cut Medicare benefits, driving up costs to you, and making health care and prescription drugs even less affordable.
They ignore simple fixes that would strengthen the program. Many are working to divide up Medicare into limited private insurance plans. Some want to raise the age of eligibility, which would lead to higher costs for those who are eligible. Some even want to completely transform Medicare from a program with clearly defined benefits to a "voucher" program with set contributions which would not be enough to pay for most people's care. This would end the Medicare program as we know it.
Today, 59 million older people and people with disabilities have health care because of Medicare. Most Americans say Medicare works well. If Medicare is in jeopardy, these people's lives are in jeopardy.
In 1995 Newt Gingrich predicted that privatization efforts would lead Medicare to "wither on the vine." He said it was unwise to get rid of Medicare right away, but envisioned a time when it would no longer exist because beneficiaries would move to private insurance plans.
That's what's happening right now in Congress, and it is not just by chance. Recent tax cuts for the highest earners have created a federal budget deficit of over 1.5 trillion dollars. Having just created this extraordinary deficit, some lawmakers are now calling for cuts to Medicare, Social Security, and other valuable programs, to solve this unnecessary, manufactured financial "crisis."
Medicare has met the needs of individual families for over 50 years while also helping to unite our national family. Medicare has helped pull families out of poverty, kept them well, and advanced health care innovations that benefit all Americans. Don’t let this national treasure unravel.
We need to improve Medicare, not cut it. Let's renew it and strengthen it for generations to come.
Protect Medicare. Don’t make America sick again.
It’s All Connected – ACA, Medicaid and Medicare are All Under Threat
President Trump and Republican leaders in Congress have promised to repeal and “replace” the Affordable Care Act. They also plan to gut the Medicaid program by imposing block granting or per-capita caps. Speaker Ryan, HHS Secretary Price, and many others in Congress also want to further privatize Medicare by turning it into a voucher program.
These are not isolated threats to be analyzed and defended against individually. Rather, these efforts comprise a collective threat to the health care and coverage of millions of Americans. Drew Altman of the Kaiser Family Foundation recently noted that, if carried through, this “health policy trifecta” would “fundamentally alter the direction of the federal role in health and core elements of the social contract” in a manner that would be “likely to shift costs to individuals and states as well as reduce consumer protections–and result in a significant increase in the number of uninsured.”
Repeal of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) would eliminate health insurance coverage for over 20 million people. This would include roughly 10 million people who have Medicaid thanks to expanded coverage through the ACA. A full repeal of the ACA would also reduce the solvency of Medicare’s Part A trust fund, re-open the Part D prescription drug “donut hole” and, among other things, remove coverage for a number of preventive services (although some ACA “replacement” proposals quietly keep the Medicare savings in order to offset the costs of killing the ACA).
Gutting the Medicaid program through block-granting or imposing per-capita caps would likely impact tens of millions of low-income families through cuts to eligibility, benefits and provider payments. This would include the roughly 10 million people who have both Medicare and Medicaid (known as “dual eligibles”) for whom Medicaid can cover Medicare premiums, cost-sharing and additional benefits.
Privatizing Medicare through premium support/vouchers would replace Medicare’s promise of a defined benefit with a coupon to shop for coverage, launching the traditional Medicare program chosen by two-thirds of beneficiaries into a death spiral. Read more about Medicare "Reform" and the value of the straditional Medicare program at http://www.medicareadvocacy.org/medicare-reform.
The threats are real. And they are imminent, with some policymakers suggesting that they should all be dealt with at once. Help protect the social contract and stand up for our health care.
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- Health Care Sabotage: Administration Issues New Guidance Making it Easier to Ignore ACA Rules October 25, 2018
- Make Sure Medicare Matters this Election – Vote on November 6! October 23, 2018
- We Need Your Voice – Don’t Let Traditional Medicare Wither on the Vine! October 16, 2018
- President’s Medicare Op-Ed is Untrue October 11, 2018
- Medicare Matters for Young Americans: Expect It, Protect It! October 10, 2018
- Health Care Sabotage: Expanded “Short-Term, Limited-Duration Insurance” is Here October 4, 2018
- Center Launches SaveMedicareNow Initiative Ahead of Mid-Term Elections September 27, 2018
- 2018 Will Determine the Future of Medicare September 25, 2018
- More Health Care Sabotage: Inadequate Funding for Navigators September 13, 2018
- Health Care Sabotage: Association Health Plans Are Here September 6, 2018
- Health Care Sabotage Continues: New Pre-Existing Conditions Legislation Not What It Seems; GAO Critical of HHS ACA Enrollment Actions August 30, 2018
- The Center for Medicare Advocacy Submits Comments Opposing Kentucky’s Medicaid Work Requirements August 23, 2018
- Health Care Sabotage – Slandering a Program Which Has Widely Expanded Access and Coverage August 16, 2018
- Major Health Care Sabotage: HHS Issues Final Rule on Short-Term Limited-Duration Insurance August 9, 2018
- Health Care Sabotage: Poll Shows Voters are Watching July 26, 2018
- Now Can We Call it Sabotage? July 19, 2018
- Health Care Sabotage – Navigators Face another Round of Cuts July 12, 2018
- Health Care Sabotage: Impact of Sabotage on the Exchanges July 5, 2018
- Health Care Sabotage: Another Attempt at ACA Repeal June 28, 2018
- ACA Repeal – Again: A Bad Deal for Older Adults and People with Disabilities June 22, 2018
- Another Week, More Health Care Sabotage June 21, 2018
- Health Care Sabotage: DOJ Won’t Defend the Affordable Care Act June 14, 2018
- Medicare Trustees Report: Stop Overpaying Private Plans & Underfunding Medicare June 6, 2018
- More Health Care Sabotage May Be Coming Soon if Short-Term Plans are Allowed May 31, 2018
- Advocates Raise Concerns About Inaccuracies and Bias in Draft MEDICARE & YOU Handbook May 31, 2018
- Health Care Sabotage: Graham-Cassidy Redux? May 23, 2018
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