Tuesday, August 14, 2012
My colleague Yuval Levin and I have a column in The Weekly Standard about how a recent study of Medicare reform in the Journal of American Medical Association distorts its own findings in an attempt to discredit premium support proposals like the Wyden-Ryan plan:
For starters, the Wyden-Ryan plan would apply only to entrants into the program after 2023. No current senior, and no one under 55 today, would be affected by it. So there is no way for the reform to increase the premiums of any current beneficiaries.
Moreover, even the Harvard scholars’ own analysis shows that no senior would necessarily pay any more for Medicare coverage under the proposed reform. The point of premium support is to bring more efficiency into the program. If competition introduced new ways of providing and structuring coverage and care that significantly reduced costs, presumably the fee-for-service Medicare plan (which would remain an option under Ryan’s proposal) would learn from some of these and reduce its own costs too. If it didn’t, it would lose customers, and it would deserve to.
You can read the rest of the article here.