Taking The Politics Out Of Medicare

Congressional Physicians Speak Out

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Washington, Feb 7, 2012 | comments

Without swift action, a critical safety net for millions of our nation’s senior citizens—the Medicare program—is facing bankruptcy as soon as 2020. This is an urgent problem but one that can be solved if Congress stops politicizing the issue and works together in a bipartisan way.

In the past several months House Republican’s laser focus on jobs and the economy resulted in the House passage of 28 jobs bills. These would improve domestic energy production to lower gas prices, reduce onerous regulations, and put people back to work—especially those who have been hardest hit by our economic crisis.

Job creation remains our number one priority, but we cannot lose sight of the glaring flaws in our nation’s healthcare system. For far too long, politicians have been ignoring the warning signs that Medicare is going broke. With the expiration date rapidly approaching, it is time for us to get to work.

Last week, Senator Coburn and I led an effort among Congressional health care providers and sent a letter to the AARP urging them to work with us as we craft a plan to save the Medicare program. As a nonpartisan organization representing senior citizens, the AARP should have a profound insight into the issues plaguing our Medicare system. So far, the AARP has been vocal about what they do not want to see in a plan to save Medicare. This letter is intended to uncover what they would like to see implemented. I look forward to their response and hope they join us at the table.

There is much work to be done before a plan is presented to the public. However, the bipartisan Ryan-Wyden plan, which gives senior citizens the ability to choose between traditional Medicare or private insurance, is a good first step that will help shape the debate. To learn more about the Ryan-Wyden plan, click here.

I urge you to continue sending me your comments, questions, and concerns about Medicare, as your input will be most helpful as we work to make Medicare strong and solvent for future generations.

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