The debate on Medicare reform has begun in earnest. Much of that debate will be budget-driven. However, the health directors of the policy organizations which constitute the Consensus Group believe that structural changes should be made in Medicare. Across a broad ideological spectrum, the members of the Consensus Group agree on the fundamental principles of Medicare reform. These are contained in the Consensus Group’s position paper on Medicare reform.
In summary, the Consensus Group concludes that:
- Medicare beneficiaries should have choice in the health coverage they obtain.
- Private sector competition is the best way to rein in unbridled cost increases.
- Medicare beneficiaries will benefit by increased competition and will receive better value when providers are competing on the basis of price, quality, and service.
- Medicare should provide a defined contribution to is beneficiaries for use in the purchase of a health plan of their choice.