Basic fixes to start saving Medicare

President Joe Biden and congressional Republicans’ State of the Union outburst last month signaled Medicare reforms would be off the table in congressional debt ceiling negotiations, but the looming fiscal crisis driven by federal health programs remains. These programs’ financial burden grows every year as the population ages and the number of workers to support recipients declines. Years of “grannies going over cliffs” scaremongering suggest that any well-meaning attempts to reform Medicare will be portrayed negatively.

Yet both parties have proposed Medicare savings – while too often condemning the other side for doing so. Histrionics aside, lawmakers have no problem funneling Medicare dollars to their own pet causes. Wouldn’t it be better to instead keep health spending fiscally sustainable for future generations?

A simple approach would be to reduce excessive payments rather than cutting benefits. After all, high hospital spending is the biggest reason why U.S. health costs exceed other countries. Medicare’s convoluted “provider entitlement system” currently rewards volume over value and prioritizes the political clout of those delivering care over those receiving it.

The full article can be found in Washington Examiner.

© Paragon Health Institute 2023. All Rights Reserved.

Paragon Health Institute (PHI) is a non-partisan, not-for-profit policy research institute. Any views, beliefs, or opinions expressed by PHI’s Public Advisors are those of its Advisors and do not necessarily reflect the official policies or positions of PHI or its employees. Any views, beliefs, or opinions expressed by PHI or its employees belong solely to PHI and do not necessarily reflect those of PHI’s Public Advisors.