Medicare Advantage Demo Costly
The nonpartisan Government Accountability Office, reporting on what is called the “MA Quality Bonus Payment Demonstration,” stated: “Rather than implement (ObamaCare)’s bonus structure, (the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services) announced in November 2010 that it would conduct a nationwide demonstration from 2012 through 2014 to test an alternative method for calculating and awarding bonuses.”
Now get ready for the sticker shock: The program is estimated to cost $8 billion. Not only that, but the GAO, according to MedPage Today, says the Medicare demonstration program being carried out by the Obama administration "is poorly designed and should be cancelled."
As an alternative, the GAO recommends that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services ought to go back to the Medicare Advantage bonus plan that was passed in the Affordable Care Act. That would cut close to $200 billion from Medicare Advantage plans over the next ten years.
Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah), who requested the report, said the GAO findings show that Health and Human Services "abused its authority by creating what isn't really a demonstration program at all."
However, HHS disagreed with the GAO findings and said the bonus payment system in the ACA "would not provide an immediate incentive for many plans to improve the quality of care delivered to MA beneficiaries."