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PFM co-chairs’ statement on CMS's proposed Medicare Advantage payment changes

Douglas Holtz-Eakin and Kenneth Thorpe

As a bi-partisan organization focused on the future of Medicare, we are deeply concerned about CMS’ announcement on proposed changes to the Medicare Advantage program. These across the board cuts are short-sighted with little consideration of their impact on the quality of care currently delivered to beneficiaries. Such an action is disruptive to the system, driving more beneficiaries to the unreformed fee-for-service model that will in no way help improve the health of beneficiaries or the long-term sustainability of Medicare. While we recognize the urgent need to address budgetary pressures, broad and indiscriminate cuts to Medicare Advantage and providers are counterproductive to the long-term vision for the future of Medicare, and, as a result, are not the answer for solving our entitlement crisis. Any reform must also improve quality of care and reduce costs so we can ensure the sustainability of the Medicare program for future generations.

As an organization, PFM has offered guard rails as a framework for a bi-partisan consensus on the future of Medicare.