To the Editor:
We are very concerned about cuts made to Medicare Advantage in 2010, when Obamacare passed. Funding reductions to the Advantage program reduce the affordability of good health care choices for seniors, negatively impacting health and quality of life.
The main reason we are healthy is because we work hard at it. It helps to have an affordable health care plan, too. We chose our Advantage plan over traditional Medicare specifically so we could choose our doctors. One of our doctors stopped practicing, so now we share the same doctor. To lose him, too, would be devastating. When funding to Medicare Advantage is reduced, doctors and hospitals are more apt to leave the network.
Between the two of us, we’ve had surgery and diabetes management covered by the Advantage plan. Living on Social Security alone, all our money goes to medications, medical bills and household expenses. Prescriptions alone cost $130 monthly. Like other seniors, we would have a terribly tough time managing an increase in premiums or co-pays. Others are already seeing these increases, and this will continue if Medicare Advantage continues to have its funding cut.
Congress needs to work toward other budget solutions that don’t involve cutting Medicare Advantage. With over 14 million seniors using an Advantage plan to keep health care costs down, it should be obvious that the program is crucial to those of us who rely on it. The program can’t sustain more cuts without hurting seniors directly.
— Roger and Mary Welklin