September 21,2010

Medicare Advantage Cuts Undermine Administration Assurances of Stability


To:    Reporters and Editors
Fr:     Jill Gerber for Sen. Grassley, 202/224-6522
Re:    Medicare Advantage
Da:    Tuesday, Sept. 21, 2010

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced today that, on average, Medicare Advantage premiums will be 1 percent lower in 2011 than today.  Sen. Chuck Grassley, ranking member of the Committee on Finance, with jurisdiction over Medicare, made the following comment in response to the announcement.

“One million seniors will be forced out of their current Medicare Advantage plan next year.  More cuts are on the way.  Changes to Medicare Advantage are one more violation of the President’s promise that if you like the health care coverage you have, you can keep it.  Congressional Democrats cut Medicare Advantage in 2008 and overrode a presidential veto to do it.  The Administration’s own chief actuary predicts that the $200 billion in cuts from health reform will decrease Medicare Advantage’s projected enrollment by 50 percent between now and 2017.   The Administration may be trying to persuade seniors that everything is fine, but the millions of Medicare beneficiaries who will lose their current coverage or see fewer benefits in the coming years will disagree.”