Medicare is a federal government program under the U.S. Social Security Administration that reimburses hospitals and physicians for medical care provided to qualifying people over 65 years old.
The program is divided into two parts. Part A is called hospital insurance and covers most of the costs of a stay in the hospital, as well as some follow-up costs after time in the hospital. Part B, medical insurance, pays some of the cost of doctors and outpatient medical care.
Here are the Medicare Proposals by the Presidential Candidates -
Sen. John McCain & Sen. Barack Obama.
“By 2019, Medicare will be broke. We are currently spending more on Medicare than we are collecting in payroll taxes and cashing in the few IOUs left in the trust fund.“
• Reforming the payment system for Medicare by compensating providers for diagnosis, prevention and chronic care coordination rather than rewarding those who provide “more and more complex services.”
• Denying Medicare payments to providers for preventable medical errors as an incentive to increase quality care.
• Requiring wealthy retirees—couples earning $164,000 annually and singles $82,000—to pay more for prescription drug coverage.
“As president, I will reduce costs in the Medicare program by enacting reforms to lower the price of prescription drugs, ending the subsidies for private insurers in the Medicare Advantage program and focusing resources on prevention and effective chronic disease management.”
• Reducing waste, enacting fundamental health care reforms, and putting greater focus on chronic disease management and disease prevention.
• Eliminating $150 billion in subsidies over 10 years to private Medicare Advantage managed care health plans.
• Revising the “antiquated” Medicare reimbursement system for doctors to provide “fair and reasonable” physician payments to ensure access to high-quality care.
• Closing the “doughnut hole” in the Medicare Part D prescription drug program, which limits benefits for seniors.
• Allowing the federal government to negotiate directly with drugmakers to get lower prices for the Medicare prescription drug program.
• Allowing importation of pharmaceutical drugs from Canada and other industrialized nations.
• Sending beneficiaries a full list of the drugs and fees they paid the previous year to help determine which plans can better cut out-of-pocket costs.
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