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Your Views: Congress should not mess with Medicare Advantage

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February 5, 2014

Medicare Advantage is a program that millions of senior citizens rely on for quality, affordable health care. Congress should never consider this area ripe for budget cuts. It’s bad enough that billions of dollars were taken from it to fund Obamacare; more financial reductions could cripple it.

Further cuts to our Advantage plan would increase our care costs, and that worries us. If copays and premiums rise, we may be unable to afford treatments. Switching to government Medicare is obviously not a very attractive option because of the higher out-of-pocket costs associated with Medicare alone. Neither is spending less on necessities such as groceries, but that might happen due to our fixed incomes. That’s a shame because our Humana plan is very good.

Our plan covers medical care and prescriptions, so we’re very happy with it. However, we think the $250 charge for each hospital stay is a little too much. Two surgeries for cataracts cost us $500, and a gall bladder surgery cost another $255. Although expensive, these charges could go a lot higher if Congress approves more cuts. It could also force our doctors and hospital to leave the network. Thus, we would have to drive farther just to receive medical care. That could be a problem in the case of a serious emergency.

Seniors such as us have worked hard all our lives for these benefits, and Congress needs to leave Medicare Advantage alone! Urge your congressman to protect this vital program.

DIANE & RUSSELL STEPHENSON

Janesville



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