Published October 13, 2020
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A recent survey suggests private U.S. employers are becoming increasingly open to Medicare expansion and federally regulated drug prices.
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About half of the survey respondents said that a Medicare public health insurance option would be helpful, while more than three-quarters claimed some government regulation of drug prices and hospital rates would be either “very helpful” or “somewhat helpful.”
The survey included 165 employers nationwide and was conducted by the National Alliance of Healthcare Purchaser Coalitions, which represents employers that provide health benefits to their workers.
The survey comes at a time when hospitals are consolidating, market competition is shrinking and the cost of pharmaceutical drugs continues to rise. 90 percent of the survey respondents said drug prices posed a “significant threat” to the affordability of employer-provided health coverage.
Additional highlights from the survey include:
Employer-based benefits are the largest source of health insurance in the U.S., with around half of all Americans covered by a plan provided by an employer.
Further government involvement in health care expansion or regulation could persuade employees away from their employer-based plan, which would in turn alleviate the company from having to insure them as much or at all.
Joe Biden’s “Medicare at 60” proposal aims to lower the eligibility age for Medicare from 65 to 60. That means employees ages 60-64 would have the option of leaving their employer’s coverage and making the jump to Medicare if their costs and benefits under Medicare are more favorable to them than they are in their employer coverage.
Regulating drug prices would soften the blow for employers whose plans include drug coverage. President Trump recently signed an executive order to spark legislation for a “most favored nations” policy which would regulate drug pricing in the U.S. by using international price competition as a benchmark. He has also pushed to curb surprise billing on behalf of doctors and hospitals.
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Christian Worstell is a senior Medicare and health insurance writer with MedicareAdvantage.com. He is also a licensed health insurance agent. Christian is well-known in the insurance industry for the thousands of educational articles he’s written, helping Americans better understand their health insurance and Medicare coverage.
Christian’s work as a Medicare expert has appeared in several top-tier and trade news outlets including Forbes, MarketWatch, WebMD and Yahoo! Finance.
Christian has written hundreds of articles for MedicareAvantage.com that teach Medicare beneficiaries the best practices for navigating Medicare. His articles are read by thousands of older Americans each month. By better understanding their health care coverage, readers may hopefully learn how to limit their out-of-pocket Medicare spending and access quality medical care.
Christian’s passion for his role stems from his desire to make a difference in the senior community. He strongly believes that the more beneficiaries know about their Medicare coverage, the better their overall health and wellness is as a result.
A current resident of Raleigh, Christian is a graduate of Shippensburg University with a bachelor’s degree in journalism.
If you’re a member of the media looking to connect with Christian, please don’t hesitate to email our public relations team at Mike@tzhealthmedia.com.