Has Obamacare, fronted by the Obama administration, swung any punches in the ring, or are they both playing on the same team? According to the administration estimates as of September 19, not only is Obamacare not hurting any of the private Medicare Advantage Plans but doing the opposite. They claim they are aiding in the development of Medicare Part C.
28% – that’s the rate of growth as projected by Medicare and Medicaid Centers for the Medicare Part C rolls. Premiums will have dropped 10% and the benefits will flow consistently. The director of the CMS Center for Medicare declined the authenticity of these projections during a conference call. The ACA (Affordable Care Act) froze all benchmark payments to Most Medicare Advantage Plans last year and started reducing them this year at a rate parallel to the service fees. He then stated then in two years the plans would have to use a minimum of 85% of their premiums back into medical care.
Quote from source Politico: But Blum said the sustained interest from insurers that CMS was seeing for 2013 suggested that the program would remain strong. “Plans don’t usually make strong commitments in one year just to pull out the next,” he said. Republicans, however, say it’s too early to say Medicare Advantage is safe.”
The Senate Finance Committee Republicans did not respond as politely. They blared a release revealing the harsh, cold reality of it all – only 4% of the savings the ACA should wring from Medicare Part C is now in motion, and the Government Accountability Office highly doubts the legitimacy of a proposed eight billion dollar program intended to rise payments to these plans to get appraised quality marks from the CMS, which is supposed to start this year.
In defense, a Republican senator of Utah tells the press that the program was made to protect the plans from downsizing until the election’s conclusion.
According to the CMS, the average premium is projected to rise by $1.47 to $32.59 in 2013, which is less than 2010’s $36.14. On a lighter note, the CMS also expects the availability of Advantage plans to benefits to rise by 7% in that same year. For the first time ever, Medicare beneficiaries (starting in this fall’s open enrollment season) will receive a notification informing them if they are currently enrolled in a plan so bad that the CMS won’t automatically renew them. The lists of companies which qualify under the conditions of the notification are expected to be released to the public in the near future.
Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0912/81417.html