WASHINGTON, DC— A new state-by-state analysis by the U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee (JEC) finds that in each state in the country, out-of-pocket health care costs will more than double for residents turning 65 in 2022 under the Republican budget plan passed by House Republicans in April.
The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office has estimated that a typical 65-year-old Medicare beneficiary in 2022 would see their out-of-pocket health care costs increase from $6,154 to $12,513 under the Republican budget. Using that data along with cost-sharing data from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the JEC has estimated out-of-pocket costs on a state-by-state basis. While the increase varies by state, residents in all states will see their out-of-pocket expenses more than double when they turn 65 in 2022. Residents in Florida face the largest increase –$7,383.
The report also shows that current Medicare beneficiaries will be harmed by the GOP budget, immediately losing preventive services such as mammograms and facing higher prescription drug costs.
“This new JEC analysis helps to fill in the picture on just how disastrous and costly the Republican Medicare plan is for our older Americans,” said Senator Bob Casey (D-PA), Chairman of the JEC. “If Republicans have their way, traditional Medicare will no longer exist in 2022. Instead, our elderly will get a voucher to purchase private insurance, but the voucher won’t keep pace with health care costs. The result would be a staggering increase in out-of-pocket costs beginning in 2022. In my state of Pennsylvania, someone turning 65 in 2022 would face a $6,300 increase in their health care expenses. Our elderly Americans cannot afford to have their health care expenses double, but that’s exactly what the Republican plan delivers.”
The increased out-of-pocket costs result from older Americans bearing a larger share of health care costs under the Republican plan and the increase in total health care costs that results from shifting from traditional Medicare to a less efficient, more expensive voucher program.
“The Republican Medicare plan doesn’t rein in health care costs,” continued Casey. “Instead, it simply shifts the costs onto the backs of our elderly. The Republican ‘solution’ is providing our elderly with dramatically higher costs and less care. Current beneficiaries will suffer and the next generation will face retirement without Medicare and without the peace of mind it offers.”
Current Medicare beneficiaries will lose key benefits under the GOP budget, the report notes. The Republican plan reopens the donut hole – the gap in Medicare Part D that had forced beneficiaries to pay 100 percent of their drug costs after they exceeded an initial coverage limit and until they qualified for catastrophic coverage. Additionally, the Republican plan eliminates the free annual wellness exam beneficiaries currently receive and forces older citizens to pay for preventive services such as mammograms.
Please click here for the state-by-state breakdown of the increase in out-of-pocket health care costs.