AMA Moving To Change Medicare Financing


CHICAGO, (UPI) — The American Medical Association House of Delegates, meeting in Chicago, voted to explore alternative ways of financing Medicare.

The AMA Council on Medical Service — which recommends policies and actions on socioeconomic factors affecting medicine — presented a report on options for changing the current way of financing Medicare.

The report recommended building on “existing policies to support making Medicare a defined contribution program,” and urged the doctors to vote in favor of a resolution to support “transitioning Medicare to a premium support program,” Clinical Endocrinology News reported.

Currently, the Medicare program is a defined benefit program which guarantees enrollees receive a package of healthcare benefits. The defined contribution — or premium support program — has Medicare pay beneficiaries a finite amount of money to purchase health insurance privately on their own.

A few days before the meeting, Council on Medical Service Dr. Tom Sullivan said in a statement the report’s favored resolution was withdrawn because the council “believes there is a need to put in additional work on a revised report.”

However, the Louisiana delegation succeeded in bringing the resolution back on the table and the resolution was hotly debated during a committee meeting.

Dr. Nancy Nielsen, the immediate past-president of the AMA, cautioned against moving quickly and said a wrong move could raise the ire of senior citizens during an election year.

The AMA voted to direct the council to report back to the AMA at its interim meeting — after the U.S. election in November, Clinical Endocrinology News said.

UPI - United Press International, Inc.

Since 1907, United Press International (UPI) has been a leading provider of critical information to media outlets, businesses, governments and researchers worldwide.

Join the Discussion

Comment Policy: We encourage an open discussion with a wide range of viewpoints, even extreme ones, but we will not tolerate racism, profanity or slanderous comments toward the author(s) or comment participants. Make your case passionately, but civilly. Please don't stoop to name calling. We use filters for spam protection. If your comment does not appear, it is likely because it violates the above policy or contains links or language typical of spam. We reserve the right to remove comments at our discretion.