Medicare bill, called one thing, with intentions to do something entirely different. All too common in congress. Look it up, figure it out. S 1893 or H.R. 3162 Notice the bill is “saving money” but it is giving money to illegals. For a “form letter” this one is not too bad.
This is a response I got from my congressmen on a Medicare bill. My specific question was not addressed but other items were brought up of consequence
I am writing to alert you to H.R. 3162, legislation making its way through congress that could cut the Medicare program by $190 billion if it becomes law. The measure, which I actively opposed in committee and on the floor of the U.S. House, would cut $6.5 billion in Medicare payments to nursing homes, almost $8 billion from hospitals specializing in long-term care and rehabilitation services, and $7.2 billion from home health care. In addition, the bill would also make seniors wait up to a month to get a motorized wheelchair after one has been prescribed by a doctor, cut funds for end stage renal disease care and even greatly reduce funds for oxygen.
H/R. 3162 would cut $157 billion from the part of Medicare program that has brought greater health coverage and lower out of pocket costs to more than 210,000 older Oregonians. These Medicare beneficiaries have chosen to enroll in Medicare Advantage health plans, which provide benefits that traditional Medicare health plans do not cover, vision and dental coverage, protection against catastrophic health expenses, and lower deductibles, premiums and co-payments. The cuts contained in H.R. 3162 would result in more than three million seniors nationwide losing this coverage, whit the losses disproportionately hitting rural areas like the one I represent.
Moreover, buried deep in the measure (Section 904) is a provision that sets up a new government program to fund “Comparative Effectiveness Research” to advise doctors on how to treat patients they see. This research program , which places the government squarely in the middle of the doctor-patient relationship, is paid for by a new tx on private individual group health insurance at a time when families struggle to pay for health care and bay taking $90 million a year out of the Medicare Trust Fund. The congressional Budget Office estimates that the new health insurance tax and Medicare Trust Fund transfer will put $2.9 billion into this research account. With a surge of baby boomer headed for the Medicare program, I have serious concerns with diverting dollars from the Medicare Trust Fund.
You may ask, would congress take the money away fro Medicare? Is it to reform Medicare in a way to make it more stable and last longer? Is it to improve health care for seniors? The answer is no. The measure would take money from senior health care to pay for expanded government health insurance for middle and upper-middle class families that make more than $82.000 a year, despite the fact that 89% of children those families already qualify for private health insurance coverage. And it rewards state governments for taking over two million kids off of private health insurance and putting them on this new government plan.
In general, the art of government consists of
taking as much money as possible from one
party of the citizens to give to the other. -Voltaire (1764)
While I support making sure American children in working poor families have access to health care, the plan being rushed through the Congress without so much as a hearing on the bill goes way beyond that at enormous cost to seniors and other taxpayers.
Also tucked in the proposed law is a provision (Section 143) that repeals the requirement that states certify that those receiving taxpayer assistance, such as Medicaid, are in the United States legally. Those that cross our borders illegally should not be rewarded with free health care.
About a decade ago, senior citizens in our district lost their expanded Medicare coverage when the government failed to support the health plans that operated in rural areas. I well remember the meetings I arranged with seniors to help them figure out what to do next for Medicare coverage. That’s why I’m fighting so hard to prevent this form happening again.
When congress reconvenes in the fall, hopefully my colleagues will have gotten an earful from seniors and taxpayers and we can stop this run away train before it takes Medicare off the cliff.
by Cheryl Smith
States would become instruments for expanding dependency on the federal government under the House-passed Children's Health and Medicare Protection Act (H.R. 3162). Legislation to reauthorize the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) is now headed to House–Senate conference.
The House SCHIP Bill: Cutting Medicare, Undercutting Private Coverage, and Expanding Dependency
by Cheryl Smith and Robert E. Moffit, Ph.D.
Congress is debating the future health care of millions of Americans, and its decisions will
affect families and children, Medicare beneficiaries, and taxpayers for years to come.
The 465-page bill favored by House leadership, The Children's Health and Medicare
Protection Act (H.R. 3162), greatly expands dependency of millions of Americans on
government health care, undermines private health plans, reduces choice for Medicare
beneficiaries, and saddles taxpayers with a permanent new entitlement.