Better Medicare Alliance Statement on Medicare's 50th Anniversary
In acknowledgement of Medicare's 50th anniversary, Allyson Y. Schwartz, President and CEO of the Better Medicare Alliance, issued the following statement:
"The 50th anniversary of Medicare is a time to recognize the importance of Medicare in providing health and economic security for America's seniors and their families. Medicare is a promise made and a promise kept. This week's anniversary is a time to acknowledge Medicare's success and recommit to ensuring we keep its promise for the next generation.
"Given the advances in medicine and technology, as well as the increasing numbers of new seniors, we have work to do to ensure the promise of Medicare in the years ahead. To fulfill this promise of quality, affordable health care for seniors, we need to be smarter about the way health care is financed and health care is delivered. We have to change incentives so that physicians and beneficiaries focus on prevention, early intervention, and primary care. And we need to better coordinate care, particularly for those with chronic conditions. With 75 percent of all spending on health care due to chronic diseases, we need to get people the right care at the right time, both to save lives and save money.
"Fortunately, this kind of innovation is happening everyday across the country under Medicare Advantage plans. MA plans are offering quality, high-value coordinated care at affordable rates. And seniors appreciate the benefits and the simplicity. Over 30 percent - over 17 million people - who are eligible for Medicare have chosen Medicare Advantage plans. By building on health care models that reward value over volume, we can better ensure the stability and success of Medicare for the next 50 years."