Medicare Advantage, Medicare+Choice, or Medicare Part C, has been in existence since 1986 and many employers have adopted the program as a seamless transition for their retirees to move from the coverage they are used to receiving from their employer-sponsored plan to their coverage under Medicare. Unfortunately, Medicare Advantage has also been used as a political scratching post over the last 20 years and was not spared from the claws of the Affordable Care Act.
Medicare Advantage plans sustained a reduction of 6.7 percent for 2014 and a recent ruling from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services announced another reduction of more than 4 percent planned for 2015. These types of reductions will inevitably lead to fewer choices for seniors and retirees, because plans will leave the program. It also forces reductions in benefits, limited provider networks and increases in out-of-pocket costs.
The NAM has weighed in with CMS on these reductions and will continue to work with our partners in the business community to convince the Secretary of Health and Human Services and the Administrator of the Medicare program to reconsider their position on further reducing reimbursement rates for a program many employers participate in to ease the transition from the working years to retirement.
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