As the debate over health care reform continues in Washington, AARP has chosen a side – yours.
We’re fighting to protect the Medicare benefits you’ve earned; to guarantee that you’ll never be denied coverage because of your health or age; to prevent anyone from coming between you and your doctor; and to make sure you don’t take a backseat to insurance companies.
AARP’s mission is to make our members’ voices heard. That’s why we’ve made it clear to Congress and the President that we will fight with the strength of our millions of members against any health care reform proposal that would cut Medicare benefits or increase out-of-pocket costs for seniors.
AARP continues to track the latest developments in Washington in order to provide you with the information you need to decide what health care reform will mean for you.
Medicare is a sacred promise that was made to seniors – because no one should be left to struggle with medical bills after a lifetime of hard work. At AARP, we’ve worked hard to protect and improve Medicare since its inception, and we’re not about to stop now.
Protecting Your Benefits
AARP is fighting to ensure seniors get the benefits they’ve earned, and to strengthen Medicare for future generations. We’re also working to fill in gaps in today’s benefit package, such as closing the Part D prescription drug coverage gap (the so-called “doughnut hole”).
And, we’re working to eliminate out-of-pocket costs for important preventive care like cancer screenings and diabetes tests.
AARP is fighting to get rid of waste, fraud and inefficiency in Medicare to better ensure the timely delivery of health benefits, both now and to future generations when they retire.
Unfortunately, Medicare costs – like all health costs – are skyrocketing due in large part to billions of dollars in system waste, inefficiency, and fraud. For example, Medicare is paying billions in extra subsidies to private insurance companies – spending 14 percent more per patient, on average, than for traditional Medicare. These are tax dollars that should be going toward your care, not insurance company profits.
Other ways to reduce waste include addressing over-billing by providers, cutting out unnecessary and duplicate tests, and cracking down on those who fraudulently bill Medicare. We can also save individuals and Medicare money by preventing dangerous hospital readmissions and providing follow-up care that will help individuals safely transition back home after a hospital stay.
Preserving Your Choice of Doctor
At AARP, we know how important it is for our members to have the freedom to choose their own doctor. That’s why we’re fighting to ensure doctors get paid fairly. Without health reform, Medicare doctors will be forced to take a 21 percent pay cut. We also support giving primary care providers bonus payments, which will help ensure that people with chronic conditions can get the care they need.
Health Care for 50+ Americans
AARP is fighting to ensure health care reform prevents insurance companies from denying coverage to you because of your health or age; to ensure you and your doctor are making treatment decisions – not the government or your insurance company; and to make sure your care isn’t taking a back seat to insurance companies.
AARP is fighting for health reform to stop insurance companies from using your health or age as a reason to deny coverage.
We believe insurance companies should not be allowed to:
• use age as an excuse to charge unaffordable premiums,
• deny coverage if you have a pre-existing condition, or
• drop coverage if you get sick.
And we believe that those who cannot afford it should get help paying their premiums.
AARP is fighting to stop the high prices charged by drug companies by:
• enabling drug price negotiation;
• allowing safe, legal importation of lower-priced prescription drugs from abroad; and
• permitting the sale of generic versions of biologic drugs – costly medications for diseases such as cancer and multiple sclerosis.
No One Should Come Between You and Your Health Care
AARP is fighting to ensure that all health decisions are made by you and your doctor, not your insurance company or the government. No matter what your age, your care should be your choice.
We’re also working to ensure that older Americans have the choice to receive the services they need at home rather than in a more costly institution.
Throughout Massachusetts, AARP members are volunteering to help make national health care reform a reality. Find out why they got involved. To join AARP’s Health Action Now campaign in your community, email us or call 1-866-448-3621.
Visit the AARP Massachusetts Community page for the latest information about health care reform.