Confused by that number you keep hearing from the candidates in connection with Medicare – $716 billion dollars? Who’s cutting what? Which side is right? Kaiser Health News‘ Mary Agnes Carey cuts through the campaign clutter for you with an excellent FAQ.
My key takeaways? President Obama’s plan reduces spending in certain areas of Medicare but spending overall is still set to increase over the coming years. VP candidate Paul Ryan’s plan would keep the so-called cuts in place but direct the savings elsewhere. There’s no plan to cut benefits to beneficiaries on either side as far as I can tell. In fact, under Obama’s plan – and, indeed, it’s already happening – benefits have increased (“doughnut hole” prescription coverage, for example).