Press Releases
September 14, 2021

BMA, Over 45 Health Care Leaders Urge Congress to Protect All Medicare Beneficiaries in Reconciliation Bill

National Hispanic Medical Association, Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum, Home Care Association of America, & others join BMA letter thanking Congress for taking steps to protect Medicare Advantage beneficiaries when adding new benefits to Medicare

Washington, D.C. – Better Medicare Alliance, the leading research and advocacy organization supporting Medicare Advantage, sent a letter to Congress co-signed by 46 leading consumer, disability, minority health, and provider organizations thanking lawmakers for taking steps to protect Medicare Advantage beneficiaries when adding new benefits to Fee-for-Service (FFS) Medicare and encouraging Congress to maintain this language in the final bill.

The letter, co-signed by top health care leaders including the National Hispanic Medical Association, Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum, Coalition of Texans with Disabilities, National Adult Day Services Association (NADSA), Healthcare Leadership Council, Home Care Association of America, New Jersey State Nurses Association, ChenMed, Oak Street Health, VillageMD, and others, comes as Congress considers adding vision, hearing, and dental benefits to FFS Medicare as part of its emerging reconciliation package.

Better Medicare Alliance’s letter calls the addition of new Medicare benefits “an important policy change that will benefit millions of seniors and individuals living with disabilities” and thanks lawmakers for considering the cost of new benefits in FFS Medicare in the Medicare Advantage benchmark calculation.

Read the full letter HERE.

“Better Medicare Alliance welcomes Congress’s efforts to improve Medicare to meet the needs of today’s seniors. We are grateful to Congressional leadership for taking steps to ensure any new benefits are fully funded so that Medicare is strengthened for all beneficiaries, including the proportionately more diverse, lower-income, and more at-risk population that chooses to enroll in Medicare Advantage,” said Mary Beth Donahue, President and CEO of the Better Medicare Alliance. “Medicare Advantage is how nearly 27 million seniors and Americans with disabilities experience the promise of Medicare today. 91% of Medicare Advantage beneficiaries oppose any potential cuts to the program, and 93% say a candidate’s support for Medicare Advantage is important to earning their vote. We appreciate that Congress’s reconciliation bill reflects the cost of vision, dental, and hearing benefits in the Medicare Advantage benchmark calculation and urge lawmakers to maintain this language in any final bill that reaches the House floor.”

“With a proportionally more diverse beneficiary population and added benefits that meaningfully address social determinants of health, protecting Medicare Advantage is fundamentally a matter of health equity,” said Juliet K. Choi, President and CEO of Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF). “APIAHF commends Congress for taking steps to enhance benefits in Fee-for-Service Medicare. At the same time, we must be careful not to impede Medicare Advantage’s ability to continue closing gaps in health disparities and reaching underserved populations and communities of color with needed care. Any changes to Medicare must be implemented in ways that lift up all beneficiaries, regardless of their choice in Medicare coverage.”

“The community of people with disabilities is paying close attention to Congress’s work on reforms to Medicare and joins Better Medicare Alliance in urging Congress to safeguard Medicare Advantage beneficiaries in this process,” said Dennis Borel, Executive Director of the Coalition of Texans with Disabilities. “Medicare Advantage has a higher rate of beneficiaries who enroll due to a disability than FFS Medicare, and its flexible benefit design allows for innovative coverage solutions tailored to their needs. We support proposed changes to Medicare, but those that fail to account for this beneficiary population in Medicare Advantage would do a disservice to Americans with disabilities and fall short of Congress’s own goals.”

“The Medicare Advantage program enables innovative care delivery organizations like Landmark to bring comprehensive medical care into the homes of our most vulnerable seniors resulting in higher patient satisfaction, significant improvements in quality of care, and dramatic savings for the US health system,” said Nick Loporcaro, CEO of Landmark Health. “No beneficiary should be met with reduced benefits or higher costs, especially now as they continue to grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic. We recognize the importance of adding these benefits to FFS Medicare, and only ask that such changes not be made on the backs of vulnerable Medicare Advantage beneficiaries.”  

Co-signers on Better Medicare Alliance’s letter to Congress include:

  • Agilon Health
  • Answer Health
  • Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF)
  • Association for Behavioral Health and Wellness
  • Austin Geriatric Specialists
  • Austin Regional Clinic
  • Buffalo Medical Group
  • CareMax
  • Central Ohio Primary Care
  • ChenMed
  • ConcertoCare
  • Consumer Action
  • Council for Affordable Health Coverage
  • Direct Primary Care Coalition
  • Dean Health Plan
  • Family Care Medical Group
  • Healthcare Leadership Council
  • Home Care Association of America
  • Landmark Health
  • Lark Health
  • Metropolitan Area Neighborhood Nutrition Alliance (MANNA)
  • National Adult Day Services Association (NADSA)
  • National Association of Health Underwriters (NAHU)
  • National Hispanic Medical Association
  • New Jersey State Nurses Association (NJSNA)
  • Northwell Health
  • Oak Street Health
  • Pinehurst Medical Clinic
  • Pioneer Physicians Network
  • Podimetrics
  • Point32Health
  • Population Health Alliance
  • Preferred Primary Care Physicians
  • Premier Family Physicians
  • PriMed Physicians
  • Prevea Health
  • Public Sector HealthCare Roundtable
  • SCAN Health Plan
  • Signify Health
  • SilverSneakers by Tivity Health
  • SNP Alliance
  • The Coalition of Texans with Disabilities
  • UPMC Health Plan
  • VillageMD
  • Visiting Nurse Service of New York
  • Wilmington Health


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