September 26,2012

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Strengthening Medicare: A Primer on Competitive Bidding

An Analysis By The Senate Finance Committee Minority Staff

WASHINGTON –With Medicare costs expected to double over the next decade and with $37 trillion in promises Washington has made without a plan to pay for, there has been much conversation in Washington about how to reform this program and put it on a path towards long-term solvency in order to ensure seniors have access to quality health care.  The following analysis by the Senate Finance Committee Minority Staff, Strengthening Medicare: A Primer on Competitive Bidding, outlines the strong bipartisan support for Medicare reform in order to help educate and inform this critical debate.

“Millions of seniors depend on Medicare, but if we fail to reform it soon, we risk the future of Medicare.  That is unacceptable,” said Hatch, Ranking Member of the Senate Finance Committee which has jurisdiction over the Medicare program. “One of the reforms that has been long discussed by both Democrats and Republicans is that of competitive bidding – similar to the hugely popular Medicare prescription drug benefit.  Understanding how this concept came to be – and understanding the broad support for it – should help inform the debate as we work to safeguard this crucial program.”