Energy and Commerce and Ways and Means Committees Explore Efforts to Modernize Medicare Program

August 29, 2013

WASHINGTON, DC – House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI), Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-MI), Energy and Commerce Health Subcommittee Chairman Joe Pitts (R-PA), and Ways and Means Health Subcommittee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-TX) today released the first paper in a series examining the flaws in the existing Medicare program and outlining opportunities for reform. The series, Modernizing Medicare for the 21st Century, will outline a bipartisan approach that will both protect beneficiaries and reduce costs. With these papers, the members seek “to initiate a discussion on how to protect seniors and place the Medicare program on sound financial footing.”

The first installment of the Modernizing Medicare for the 21st Century series examines (1) the traditional Medicare cost-sharing framework and the impact current thresholds have on beneficiaries – often leaving them unprotected against catastrophic costs; (2) the impact of supplemental coverage with low cost-sharing requirements that reduce incentives to seek cost-effective care; and (3) how modernizing the traditional cost-sharing features could better align beneficiary incentives, ensure beneficiaries greater out-of-pocket predictability and reduce overall Medicare costs.

In the coming months, the series will continue to explore opportunities to modernize and strengthen the Medicare program for both today’s seniors and for generations to come.

Read the complete paper online here.

###