At a town hall meeting today with seniors in Silver Spring, MD, Vice President Joe Biden and Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius discussed the release of a new report
, "Health Insurance Reform and Medicare: Making Medicare Stronger for America's Seniors." The Vice President was perfectly clear: "Nobody is going to mess with your benefits. All we do is make it better for people on Medicare."
He joked about having to disabuse his own mother of myths being spread around about "death panels" and reduced Medicare benefits, getting laughs at the line: "I said, 'Mom, I'm trying to kill you," before explaining to her that it was a "bunch of malarkey."
The new report out of HHS addresses some of the common questions American seniors have about health insurance reform: How will reducing subsidies to Medicare Advantage plans affect me? How will health insurance reform make my care more affordable? Will health insurance reform actually improve my care? Will I have a choice of doctor? Will Medicare be there for me in the future?
For each of these questions, the report details the problems with the status quo and discusses the solutions provided by the President’s health insurance reform plan. Some of the solutions listed in the report include:
Preserving and strengthening Medicare
Cutting high prescription drug costs
Making preventive services free
Ending overpayments to private insurance companies that cost all Medicare beneficiaries
Improving quality and patient safety
Making long term care services more affordable
Read the full report.