On November 8, 2018, President Eunie Smith signed a coalition letter on our behalf to President Trump. The letter asked the President to undo the administrative interpretation of both the Medicare and Social Security statues which have been preventing seniors from receiving Social Security if they waive Medicare Part A coverage. This effectively forces seniors to enroll in Medicare, which was enacted to serve as a voluntary program.
In response, President Trump acted on his campaign promise to protect and strengthen Medicare in an Executive Order entitled, Protecting and Improving Medicare for Our Nation’s Seniors announced on October 3, 2019. Specifically, Section 11 directs the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary to work with the Commissioner of Social Security to revise policies both to allow seniors access to their Social Security benefits without Medicare enrollment and also to protect those who choose to opt-out from penalty.
Sec. 11. Maximizing Freedom for Medicare Patients and Providers. (a) Within 180 days of the date of this order, the Secretary, in coordination with the Commissioner of Social Security, shall revise current rules or policies to preserve the Social Security retirement insurance benefits of seniors who choose not to receive benefits under Medicare Part A, and propose other administrative improvements to Medicare enrollment processes for beneficiaries.
The Executive Order also includes provisions preventing fraud, waste, and abuse and encourages innovation within the Medicare system through use of telehealth and the creation of new plans.
President Trump also emphasized the danger Medicare for All poses to Americans. Under this plan, not only will private insurance be eliminated, but Medicare will as well. As he said, “instead of ending the current Medicare program and eliminating health choices for all Americans, my Administration will continue to protect and improve Medicare by building on those aspects of the program that work well, including the market-based approaches in the current system.”
Eagle Forum applauds the President’s actions and dedication to serving the American people, rather than Washington bureaucrats.