Truth: Obamacare Helps Medicare

Speaker Paul Ryan is already in the news saying that because of “Obamacare” Medicare is “going broke” (Fox News, 11/13/2016). As a consequence, he says, he intends to bring back his plan to privatize Medicare and change it into a voucher system. Under his plan, individuals would be given a set amount to help pay premiums for insurance on the open market. This tired idea is not necessary and not best for Medicare beneficiaries or taxpayers – all of whom would pay more and get less under the Ryan plan. It would “save” Medicare in name only.

The truth is Obamacare is good for Medicare and Medicare beneficiaries. It added 12 years to the solvency of the Medicare trust fund[1], preventive benefits with no co-pays[2], and reduced prescription drug prices for beneficiaries.[3]  Surely Mr. Ryan knows this.

The truth matters.  Please, pay close attention to what is said about Medicare, (and other important issues for vulnerable people), and correct misinformation whenever you can. The Center will be posting information and facts to counter false statements as necessary. Contact us if you have concerns.

For more information see the Washington Post article that gave Speaker Ryan’s statement “4 Pinnochios,” their fact-checker’s worst rating for accuracy, or the New York Times Editorial of Nov. 16, 2016 which also debunks Ryan’s statement in no uncertain terms.


[1] Medicare Trustees Report.  See p. 5 of  https://www.cms.gov/Research-Statistics-Data-and-Systems/Statistics-Trends-and-Reports/ReportsTrustFunds/downloads/tr2010.pdf
[2] CMS. “More than 10 Million People with Medicare Have Saved over $20 billion on Prescription Drugs since 2010.” 08 February 2016. https://www.cms.gov/Newsroom/MediaReleaseDatabase/Press-releases/2016-Press-releases-items/2016-02-08.html (site visited November 15, 2016).
[3] CMS. “Part D Donut Hole Savings by State YTD 2015.” https://downloads.cms.gov/files/Part%20D%20dount%20hole%20savings%20by%20state%20YTD%202015.pdf (site visited November 15, 2016).