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Trillo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-22-09 10:20 PM
Original message
Budget chief contradicts Obama on Medicare costs
Source: Associated Press

WASHINGTON Congress' chief budget officer on Tuesday contradicted President Barack Obama's oft-stated claim that seniors wouldn't see their Medicare benefits cut under a health care overhaul.

The head of the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, Douglas Elmendorf, told senators that seniors in Medicare's managed care plans could see reduced benefits under a bill in the Finance Committee.

The bill would cut payments to the Medicare Advantage plans by more than $100 billion over 10 years.

Read more: http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5gJK9l...



It seems a far cry from the dream of Single-Payer Universal AKA Medicare for All.
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NMDemDist2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-22-09 10:22 PM
Response to Original message
1. it's not the Obama bill they're talking about it's that POS Baucus bill
that would cut Medicare
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DLnyc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-22-09 10:33 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. yes Baucus POS should be DOA
I'm looking forward to seeing it held up as the example of what NOT to do.
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MidwestTransplant Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-22-09 10:48 PM
Response to Reply #1
4. EXACTLY. Totally sloppy reporting.
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liam_laddie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-22-09 10:58 PM
Response to Reply #4
5. AP has been sloppy for years! n/t
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robcon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-23-09 08:00 AM
Response to Reply #1
18. I don't understand: "it's not the Obama bill they're talking about it's that POS Baucus bill"
Obama has a bill? Which one?

I think there is a smokescreen for all these bills... they're always subject to change.
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Purveyor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-22-09 10:27 PM
Response to Original message
2. "Medicare benefits cut"... Mission accomplished. Talking points for hatewing radio...
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DCKit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-22-09 11:07 PM
Response to Original message
6. So much for the CBO being impartial. n/t
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Psephos Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-23-09 12:09 AM
Response to Reply #6
12. It would be the opposite of impartial not to issue a report based on numbers instead of politics.
Elmendorf came from a senior fellowship at The Brookings Institute, which is a left-of-center think tank. While there, he directed the Hamilton Project, a program to ensure that people of all income levels benefit from broad economic growth. He also was an editor of the B.I.'s economic research publications.

Before that, he had been a Harvard professor, an economist with the President's (Clinton's) Council of Economic Advisers, an Assistant Secretary in Economic Policy at Treasury, and a deputy director of Research and Statistics with the Fed Board. He was a National Science Foundation fellow at Harvard, where he got his PhD, after graduating summa cum laude from Princeton.

His research at his various engagements has been on national health care reform, macroeconomic forecasting, Social Security and Medicare funding, and other high-level programs.

DCKit, your idea of a proven reliable CBO director and mine are miles apart.
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jtrockville Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-22-09 11:25 PM
Response to Original message
7. Isn't Medicare Advantage for the part of your care that ISN'T covered by Medicare?
Maybe I'm wrong (I'm quite a few years away from being eligible for Medicare), but I thought Medicare Advantage was the private-for-profit health INSURANCE you purchase to fill the "gap" between what Medicare provides and what you actually need.
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marybourg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-23-09 01:25 AM
Response to Reply #7
15. No, that's "Medigap". Medicare Advantage was the first shot
in the WPE's war on Medicare. He and the insurers claimed that "private industry could do it better and cheaper", so he and the Congress gave the private insurers 14% MORE to institute what is essentially HMO type coverage ie. restricted provider lists, many restrictions on meds but expanded coverage incl. dental, vision and meds in some cases (regular Medicare recipients don't get those things). They have of course been unable to provide such services for less than regular Medicare and are still getting the 14% extra. So this is the perfect target for cost cutting.
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jtrockville Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-23-09 09:59 PM
Response to Reply #15
20. Wow, I had no idea such a thing existed. Thanks.
And yes, it sounds like a perfect target, as long as the billionaires for wealthcare find out about it.
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proReality Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-22-09 11:31 PM
Response to Original message
8. Currently searching for "gap" insurance and...
two insurance salesmen have said the Medicare Advantage Plans will have cuts.

http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2009/09/humana_letter_o...


Medicare Advantage Plans

Medicare Advantage Plans are health plan options that are part of the Medicare program. If you join one of these plans, you generally get all your Medicare-covered health care through that plan. This coverage can include prescription drug coverage. Medicare Advantage Plans include:

* Medicare Health Maintenance Organization (HMOs)
* Preferred Provider Organizations (PPO)
* Private Fee-for-Service Plans
* Medicare Special Needs Plans

When you join a Medicare Advantage Plan, you use the health insurance card that you get from the plan for your health care. In most of these plans, generally there are extra benefits and lower copayments than in the Original Medicare Plan. However, you may have to see doctors that belong to the plan or go to certain hospitals to get services.

To join a Medicare Advantage Plan, you must have Medicare Part A and Part B. You will have to pay your monthly Medicare Part B premium to Medicare. In addition, you might have to pay a monthly premium to your Medicare Advantage Plan for the extra benefits that they offer.

If you join a Medicare Advantage Plan, your Medigap policy wont work. This means it wont pay any deductibles, copayments, or other cost-sharing under your Medicare Health Plan. Therefore, you may want to drop your Medigap policy if you join a Medicare Advantage Plan. However, you have a legal right to keep the Medigap policy.

To compare Medicare Advantage Plans, go to the Medicare Options Compare.
http://www.medicare.gov/choices/advantage.asp


Till recently I never realized how involved the insurance companies have made Medicare and "gap" insurance. None of it is cut and dried or consistent from one company to another. The only constant is the straight up Basic Plan A & B from the government, which doesn't cover everything and can still leave one bankrupted if there are serious health problems. Beyond the Basic...what a nightmare!
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Festivito Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Sep-22-09 11:56 PM
Response to Original message
9. "could see reduced benefits " Could?
And where will the 100B$ go? To a non-managed-care arm, in other words, no loss to medicare people at all?
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Old Hob Donating Member (296 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-23-09 12:00 AM
Response to Original message
10. deleted
Edited on Wed Sep-23-09 12:07 AM by Old Hob
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Aragorn Donating Member (784 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-23-09 12:00 AM
Response to Original message
11. it's simple
Medicare Advantage are those plans which get extra federal money - private plans - and therefore can offer extra benefits. However we taxpayers pay a lot more to subsidize them.

This was part of the Repub plan to sink all Medicare.

This is also NOT a contradiction - these plans are fake and have been targeted all along. This IS sloppy reporting but it is NOT news.
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lib_wit_it Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-23-09 12:27 AM
Response to Reply #11
13. As I understand it, these plans are considered a give-away to insurance companies, as they really
are just middlemen administering Medicare, and then charging lots more for a limited amount of extra coverage, if any.
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laughingliberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-23-09 12:56 AM
Response to Original message
14. Obama has talked about the Medicare Advantage Subsidies all along
He has repeatedly said he wants to end the subsidy to the private insurance companies offering these programs. The savings, he has stated, would be 1.77 billion per year. There is no reason to subsidize these for profit vultures. They can do quite nicely on the premiums.
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TacticalPeek Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-23-09 01:45 AM
Response to Original message
16. You lie.

You lie, headline writer.

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ProudDad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-23-09 01:50 AM
Response to Original message
17. Simple Fix
Shore up Medicare - Expand and Improve it so it's a REAL single-payer system...

And make it available to everyone...

Problem solved with a 2 page bill...
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No Elephants Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-23-09 02:11 PM
Response to Reply #17
19. Sadly, I don't know if anyone in D.C. really has the courage for this, not even alll the
co-sponsors of H.R. 676.
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