Warning about Romney-Ryan Medicare Plan
If Mitt Romney’s Medicare reform plan were put into effect now, the majority of seniors would wind up paying more for their health insurance.
The Republican presidential candidate has said if elected president, he would push to convert Medicare into a voucher program. This would entail giving seniors a certain amount of money to purchase either private coverage or remain in Medicare.
For its study, the Kaiser foundation assumed the voucher amount would be equal to the second-lowest bid from a private, Medicare Advantage plan, which is also what Romney and running mate Paul Ryan have talked about.
But this amount would not be enough to cover premiums for 59% of seniors, according to the study. That would translate into 25 million seniors paying more for their benefits.
The Romney campaign pointed out that one key difference between the Kaiser model and the Romney/Ryan plans is that the latter would not be implemented until 2023. The Kaiser model was based on 2010 dollars. In addition, Romney and Ryan have been vague about the actual details of their plan.
According to the Kaiser analysis, for those remaining in traditional Medicare, 53% would pay more, with the average premium increased by $720 annually.
Among participants in private Medicare Advantage plans, 88% would pay higher premiums unless they switched to less expensive plans with less coverage and/or higher deductibles. The average premium hike in this group would be $1,044 more annually, according to the study.
To Learn More:
Study: Under A Romney-Like Medicare Plan, Seniors Face Higher Costs (by Sarah Kliff, Washington Post)
Medicare Vouchers Would Raise Costs For Most Seniors, Study Finds (by Sahil Kapur, TPM)
Transforming Medicare into a Premium Support System: Implications for Beneficiary Premiums (by Gretchen Jacobson, Tricia Neuman and Anthony Damico, The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation) (pdf)
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