Congresswoman Annie Kuster Applauds CMS Decision Not to Cut Payments for Medicare Advantage Plans
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Annie Kuster (NH-02) today applauds a new rate announcement by the Centers for Medicaid & Medicare Services (CMS). CMS has announced that it will raise payments to Medicare Advantage (MA) plans, which will help protect important health benefits for New Hampshire seniors.
Previously, CMS had estimated a reduction in payments to Medicare Advantage plans due to a provision in the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Congresswoman Kuster recently wrote a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius urging the Administration to reconsider this scheduled cut, which could have adversely affected 12,542 Medicare Advantage beneficiaries in New Hampshire by causing increases in their premiums and copays, and affecting their plan and benefit options. The recent announcement takes into consideration Kuster’s advice, and no cuts will take place for 2015.
“I’m extremely relieved that CMS took my advice and reversed its previous scheduled plan to reduce payments to Medicare Advantage,” said Congresswoman Kuster. “I have long said the Affordable Care Act was far from perfect, and I was deeply concerned that these specific reductions proposed by the ACA were not cost-effective and could have negatively impacted many Granite Staters who depend on these plans. I’m thrilled that the Administration has done the responsible thing and will continue to support the Medicare Advantage plans that provide high quality, affordable health care to many of our seniors.”
Congresswoman Annie Kuster is a strong proponent of working across the aisle to implement the Affordable Care Act as smoothly as possible and fix any problems with the bill, like potential cuts to Medicare Advantage that could have hurt New Hampshire seniors. In addition, Kuster joined a bipartisan group of her colleagues in sending a letter to CMS urging Administrator Marilyn Tavenner to reevaluate proposed reductions in payments for Medicare home health services, which many New Hampshire seniors and their families rely on to stay healthy in the comfort of their homes. She also voted in favor of the Keep Your Health Plan Act to allow people whose plans were being canceled due to ACA requirements to keep their plans for an additional year. And she recently cosponsored the Small Business Tax Credit Accessibility Act, which will help small businesses provide their employees with health insurance by expanding affordability tax credits for small employers.