The MedPAC recommendations to restructure what they call an outdated system, will be the subject of a congressional hearing Tuesday.
Reuters: U.S. Agency Urges New Charge For Medicare Patients
A congressional agency on Friday recommended making traditional Medicare beneficiaries pay more money upfront for medical services as a way to insulate the popular government program from ever-rising healthcare costs. A report by the nonpartisan Medicare Payment Advisory Commission, or Medpac, recommended a new 20 percent charge for the 90 percent of Medicare beneficiaries who buy supplemental insurance to cover medical costs that Medicare Part A and Part B do not cover (Morgan, 6/15).
Politico Pro: MedPAC: Medicare Benefits Are Out Of Date
The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission wants Congress to give federal health officials a freer hand to overhaul parts of the Medicare benefit. Some of those changes, outlined in its June report, include caps on out-of-pocket expenses, changes to the deductibles for hospital and physician services, additional charges for supplemental Medigap coverage and replacing coinsurance with co-payments. The suggestions will get a deeper airing at a Tuesday hearing of the House Ways and Means health subcommittee (DoBias, 6/15).
CQ HealthBeat: MedPAC Sketches Out Plan To Discourage Medigap Plan Use
Medicare beneficiaries would get a cap on out-of-pocket spending and supplemental insurance plans would face an additional charge under recommendations included in the June report to Congress by the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission. About 90 percent of seniors currently buy supplemental plans such as Medigap but would be less likely to do so if Congress adopted the proposal. The recommendation also suggests that Congress should replace the current coinsurance -; which is a percentage of a beneficiary's medical costs -; with fixed-dollar copayments (Adams, 6/15).
Modern Healthcare: MedPAC Urges Changes For Beneficiaries
Centered primarily on the role of the beneficiary, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission's latest report to Congress recommends the HHS secretary develop a Medicare fee-for-service benefit design that includes a host of changes including an out-of-pocket maximum, deductibles for Parts A and B and an additional charge on supplemental insurance (Zigmond, 6/15).