Monthly Archives: July 2017

In Dramatic Fashion, the U.S. Senate Defeats the Latest Attempt to Appeal the Affordable Care Act

Early this morning, the U.S. Senate once again defended the American people and rejected a bill that would have devastated American families, led to tens of millions of people losing coverage, and put the Medicaid program at risk. The “Health Care Freedom Act,” the so-called “skinny repeal” bill, was defeated 49-51, ending this partisan attempt to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) without a reasonable substitute that would protect the coverage and care for all Americans.

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House Passes Budget Resolution That Would Radically Transform the Medicare Program

This week, the House Budget Committee approved a 2018 budget resolution that would end Medicare’s guarantee of health coverage by converting the program to a premium support system. It would cut Medicare spending by $487 billion, largely by shifting more health care costs to beneficiaries. This is in contrast to President Trump’s budget, which spares Medicare from cuts.

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It’s Not Over Yet. Senate Will Soon Vote to Advance Affordable Care Act Repeal.

In a shocking twist, Senate leadership decided this week that they will no longer advance the Better Care Reconciliation Act, a bill that would have slashed Medicaid, spiked costs for older adults, and yanked coverage away from 22 million Americans. This news would be welcome, if not for reports that the Senate is now rumored to turn to an already discredited scheme to repeal the Affordable Care Act (ACA) without a meaningful and simultaneous replacement.

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Medicare Rights Testifies at Congressional Hearing on Medicare Fraud and Abuse

Today, Stacy Sanders, federal policy director of the Medicare Rights Center, testified in support of a proposed law that would increase the civil monetary penalties and criminal fines for certain types of Medicare fraud at a hearing held by the Subcommittee on Health of the U.S. House Committee on Energy and Commerce. The hearing focused on a number of bipartisan bills to improve Medicare, including the Medicare Civil and Criminal Penalties Update Act of 2017 (H.R. 3245).

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Trustees’ Report Shows That Medicare Remains on Solid Footing

The Trustees find that the Medicare Hospital Insurance (Part A) Trust Fund is solvent through 2029—a year longer than previously predicted—and that in 2016 the Trust Fund had a $5.4 billion surplus, with surpluses anticipated through 2022. Further, the Supplemental Medical Insurance (Part B and Part D) Trust Fund remains on firm financial footing, and last year’s warning that 2017 growth would trigger the creation of an Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) did not come to fruition.

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The Better Care Reconciliation Act Is No Better Than Before

After failing to bring their health care overhaul bill to a vote last month, leadership in theUS Senate released an updated version of the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA) today. As in previous versions of this bill, the updated BCRA ends Medicaid as we know it. It maintains the previous cuts to the program, including an estimated $772 billion cuts over 10 years, with cuts reaching 35% within 20 years.

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Medicare Rights Offers Ways to Improve Affordable Care Act Regulations

The Medicare Rights Center recently submitted comments responding to a federal request for information titled “Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act: Reducing Regulatory Burdens and Improving Health Care Choices to Empower Patients.” The comments provide detailed suggestions about how the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) can improve the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) regulatory landscape to empower patients and promote choice; stabilize the individual, small group, and other health insurance markets; enhance affordability; and affirm the traditional regulatory authority of the states.

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2021 Annual Awards Virtual Event

Join us for a special event on Monday, October 18, 2021 at 6 PM.