According to government sources, the Medicare Trust Fund will run out of money in 2016 if reforms are not put in place by then. Republican Congressman Paul Ryan, has put forth a plan to do just that, but this has been met with the howls and fear-mongering cries from Democrats that ANY reform will destroy Medicare and leave the disabled and senior citizens to die of lack of health care. What really is the truth in this discussion?
Here are some facts for you to ponder. Right now, 50% of doctors and some hospitals will NOT accept Medicare patients because the government reimbursement does not cover their costs. It seems that instead of truly reforming the system, Congress has developed a simple solution; cut what you will pay for services to providers, and tell them they have no choice but to accept this dictated pay schedule. Ah, but the providers do have a choice: simply drop out of the program. This action leaves those on Medicare with fewer or, even worse, NO health care providers. Fewer providers means longer waits to get to see the providers that are left. It’s called “care rationing.” Lower reimbursements plus outrageous liability insurance costs are driving a lot of doctors OUT of the medical profession and preventing a lot of new prospects from getting in.
What makes the Medicare program even worse is that Obama and the Democrats are siphoning money out of the already cash-strapped program to fund Obamacare and a “fake” tax cut. Democrats put a provision into the Affordable Health Care Act of 2010 that took $500 BILLION out of Medicare to be used as seed money for Obamacare. Obama and the Democrats then concocted a “tax cut” that in reality was nothing more than Social Security and Medicare deductions being halted temporarily. This action has shorted the system another $1.4 BILLION. Now add to this another $600 BILLION that has to come out of the general fund to pay for a “Doc fix’, basically a bribe to keep remaining doctors in the Medicare program.
What do you suppose is going to happen within ten years if you add another 30 MILLION people to an already unsustainable health care system? Take a good hard look at Canada and Great Britain’s health care systems if you really want that answer. The Democrats’ howling and screaming to scare seniors and the disabled about ANY kind of change or reform is not going to alter the reality that is facing this country right now. Paul Ryan and the Republicans have offered a realistic evaluation to help solve this crisis, and it’s about time that the adults in the room get serious about discussing this plan.
Photo credit: terrellaftermath
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