These are the facts, not speculation from people who have an agenda.

Over the past several weeks, I have read numerous articles about Medicare reform. Most of them are long on speculation and short on facts and no, the Republicans are not going to toss Granny off the cliff

The following information is directly from Paul Ryan’s website. These are the facts, not speculation from people who have an agenda. I have no agenda; I am just interested in providing my clients and interested seniors with facts, not rumors, and conjecture.

First, the bad news: Medicare is broken and needs to be fixed. So what is the good news? While there are a few minor changes in the works, none of the major changes being proposed will affect those of us currently on Medicare or about to turn 65.

So why are they tampering with Medicare? There are not enough people paying into the system to make it sustainable. If Congress keeps kicking the can down the road, the system will collapse and then everyone will lose.

In 1966 there were 19.1 million people enrolled in Medicare. On July 28, 2015, the 50th anniversary of Medicare, there were over 55 million. That’s a 188% increase. Furthermore, there are 10,000 people a day turning 65, and that will continue until 2030.

So what has Paul Ryan proposed to fix Medicare? It boils down to this. Beginning in 2024 people joining Medicare for the first time will have the option to choose between private plans or traditional Medicare. Beneficiaries can choose the health plan they feel best suits their needs. There would be premium support provided by the federal government for payments directly to the selected health plan to subsidize its cost. Individuals with serious health conditions, as well as lower-income Americans, would be eligible for higher premium support payments. For those of us already on Medicare nothing will change, though we will have the option of going on the privatized system.

Can things change between what is being proposed and what will be in the final bill? Absolutely, but nothing radical has been proposed for those of us currently on Medicare, and nothing that has been proposed will take effect for at least eight years.

Like it or not, Medicare is broken and if it is not fixed we all are going to suffer. These are the facts. Medicare as we know it is no longer sustainable. Either this or another administration will have to make changes at some point. Congress’s challenge is to fix what is broken without breaking what is currently working.

So what can you do to make your voice heard? Get involved! Write your senators and representatives, write letters to the editor, and most importantly, get together with other like-minded seniors. The latest census puts the population of the United States at 318.9 million. According to the AARP website there are 108.7 million people over the age of 50. That’s over a third of the population of the United States.

To stay informed on the proposed changes to Medicare, like my Facebook page or check out the Articles page on my website. As things progress I will be updating both of them.
References used for this article.

Paul Ryan’s webpage

Number of people covered by Medicare