The following statement was issued today by Richard Fiesta, Executive Director of the Alliance for Retired Americans regarding President Obama’s Fiscal Year 2016 budget proposal.
“Overall, President Obama’s 2016 budget proposal is a mixed bag for retirees.
“We are concerned that the budget would hurt many seniors who are already stretching their health care dollars as far as they can go. It would make seniors pay higher deductibles, while adding new home health co-pays; increase means testing; and create a Medigap surcharge for those who sign up with plans which provide first- or near-first-dollar coverage.
“On a positive note, the budget calls for Medicare rebates for prescription drugs. It would save at least $116 billion in Medicare payments to drug companies for medications prescribed for low-income patients. The budget also closes the doughnut hole coverage gap for brand name prescription drugs in 2017 – even faster than the year 2020 that was in the Affordable Care Act.
“On another positive note, the Alliance applauds the President for his plan to reallocate payroll tax revenue from Social Security’s old-age and survivors trust fund to the disability trust fund. It also moves us away from the mindless sequestration cuts that have been harmful to retirees.
“The Alliance stands behind the efforts of those on Capitol Hill who will continue the fight to stop the federal government from shifting additional health care costs to retirees through changes to Medicare.”