For Immediate Release
February 19, 2013
Washington, DC - America's Health Insurance Plans’ (AHIP) President and CEO Karen Ignagni released the following statement today in response to proposed Medicare Advantage payment changes, the 45-day notice, released by CMS last Friday:
"The proposed changes to Medicare Advantage payments are a crushing blow to the 14 million seniors and people with disabilities who count on this critically important part of Medicare. The combined effect of the ACA cuts and new proposed payment changes will likely result in seniors facing higher out-of-pocket costs, reduced benefits, and fewer health care choices.
"These cuts will compound the $200 billion in Medicare Advantage cuts and the new health insurance tax included in the health care reform law. The Congressional Budget Office projects that the reform law's payment cuts alone will result in three million fewer people enrolled in Medicare Advantage. Actuaries at Oliver Wyman estimate that the health insurance tax will result in seniors facing $220 in higher out-of-pocket costs and reduced benefits next year and $3,500 in additional costs over the next ten years. The cumulative impact of these changes will reduce Medicare Advantage payments next year by more than eight percent, or approximately $11 billion, destabilizing the program and putting at risk the health care coverage upon which millions of beneficiaries rely.
"Washington cannot tax and cut Medicare Advantage this much and not expect seniors to be harmed. These changes will disrupt coverage for Medicare Advantage beneficiaries at a time when evidence clearly demonstrates that Medicare Advantage provides higher-quality care than the fee-for-service part of Medicare."