The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

Medicare Advantage Taking Advantage

Apr 8, 2024

If trends continue, 83 BILLION DOLLARS will be stolen in 2024 from the federal government’s two Medicare Trust Funds. What bandits are responsible for this theft? None other than the insurance corporations who “manage” the many Medicare Advantage Plans!

The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission, a little-known body set up by federal law in 1997 to advise Congress on Medicare costs, issued its latest report, Medicare Payment Policy, on March 15. On page 25, it says, “We estimate that Medicare spends approximately 22% more for Medicare Advantage enrollees than it would spend if those beneficiaries were enrolled in FFS [traditional] Medicare.”

In other words, the private health insurance corporations that run Medicare Advantage Plans are charging taxpayers 22% more than it would cost the Medicare Trust Fund to pay for traditional fee-for-service Medicare. So why not cut out these middlemen corporations who are overcharging? Why indeed!