Better Medicare Alliance Statement on S. 1859
Washington, D.C. - Better Medicare Alliance (BMA) President and CEO Allyson Y. Schwartz released the following statement in response to the introduction of S. 1859, legislation designed to delay the tax on health insurance premiums:
“If Congress does not act to delay the Health Insurance Tax (HIT), 19 million beneficiaries enrolled in Medicare Advantage - many living on low, fixed incomes - could face higher premiums, reduced benefits, and higher out-of-pocket costs. In fact, premiums could increase by $22 billion nationwide in 2018 - an additional $245 per year for each enrollee, including those who rely on Special Needs Plans and Employer Group Waiver Plans.
“Most seniors simply cannot afford to pay more for Medicare. The reality is that 37 percent of Medicare Advantage beneficiaries live on annual incomes of $20,000 or less. The high-quality, affordable coverage that Medicare Advantage provides could be financially out of reach for millions of seniors and people with disabilities if Congress does not take immediate action.
“We applaud Senator Cory Gardner and the 10 Senators who cosponsored this legislation for seeking action to provide relief from this harmful premium increase by extending the moratorium on the tax for another year. Congress should act to stop this HIT and protect American seniors.”