Press Release             

Contact: Mitchell Clark
Senior Communications Associate

November 14, 2012

Medicare Rights Center Responds to Deficit Reduction Proposals that Force People with Medicare to Pay More for Less
--Releases Fact Sheets on Major Proposals--

New York, NY – This week, key decision makers are meeting in Washington D.C. to talk about deficit reduction. Leaders on both sides of the aisle have signaled a willingness to find savings in Medicare in order to bring down the nation’s debt. To inform this debate, the Medicare Rights Center announced a new series of fact sheets detailing major deficit reduction proposals that would shift costs to current and future Medicare beneficiaries.

 “While weighing various Medicare proposals, policymakers must consider the conversations happening around the kitchen tables of older adults and people with disabilities, said Joe Baker, President of the Medicare Rights Center. “Proposals under consideration, like premium support and raising the Medicare eligibility age, do not save costs, they simply shift costs onto people with Medicare—half of whom live on annual incomes of $22,000 or less.”

“Instead of forcing Medicare families to pay for deficit reduction, we urge policymakers to confront the real problem in the health care system, rising health care costs overall,” said Stacy Sanders, Director of Federal Policy at the Medicare Rights Center. “With half of all Medicare beneficiaries living on annual incomes of $22,000 or less, this is imperative.”

Medicare Rights launched a new Deficit Reduction and Medicare webpage with the fact sheets. The proposals discussed thus far include:

The fact sheets detail problems with these proposals and, along with future fact sheets, also include other solutions that do not increase costs for beneficiaries. One such solution is eliminating wasteful spending on prescription drugs by allowing the federal government to pay pharmaceutical companies the same price for drugs under Medicare as it does under Medicaid.

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Medicare Rights Center is a national, nonprofit consumer service organization that works to ensure access to affordable health care for older adults and people with disabilities through counseling and advocacy, educational programs, and public policy initiatives.


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