Obamacare Saves Billions
As many of the provisions of Obamacare are implemented there are a few implemented early in 2010 when the bill became law in that are now showing promising results in reports. One of these provisions includes the Medicare Coverage gap. Obamacare is phasing in discounts from 2010-2020 to help close the “Donut hole” in Medicare Part D; The Donut hole is a gap between prescription drug coverage, and what beneficiaries pay out of pocket. The Donut hole occurs after a beneficiary and their plan have paid a certain amount for drug coverage, but less than the amount to reach the catastrophic coverage amount. Beneficiaries in the gap are responsible for a certain percent of their drug cost; before Obamacare came into effect individuals had to pay 100% of the prescription drug if they were in the “Donut Hole”.
Obamacare helps reduce the “Donut Hole” through several actions.
- 2010: Obamacare provides a one time $250 Check for beneficiaries who have reached the “Donut Hole”
- 2011: Obamacare provides discounts on brand name drugs for beneficiaries in the “Donut Hole”
- 2012-2020: Obamacare will continue to provide discounts for individuals in the “Donut Hole” until the gap is fully closed.
Base on the report from The Affordable Care Act – A Stronger Medicare Program in 2012 by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services it was discovered that Americans, and individuals with disabilities have coughed up significantly less for prescription drugs under Medicare, How much less, about $5.7 Billion dollars less. In 2011 the savings was 2.3 Billion, and 2.5 Billion in 2012
The report states since the law’s enactment that over 6.1 Million individuals have experienced some sort of savings with regards to Medicare Part D coverage gap. In 2012 Individuals with Medicare Part D who were previously in the Medicare “Donut Hole” received close to 50% reduction on covered brand name drugs, and an estimated 14% on non-brand name drugs.
There are other factors that have resulted in additional savings which include the full coverage of Preventative Services. Under Obamacare individuals with Medicare are able to receive certain preventative services with no cost sharing from the Medicare beneficiary. As a result in 2012 as many as 34 Million individuals received preventative service treatment under Medicare with no cost sharing.
Here are some other areas that the Medicare program performed very well.
- Medicare Beneficiaries continue to pay less in premiums for Medicare Part B benefits.
- Medicare Beneficiaries who enrolled in Medicare Advantage and drug plans paid less in premiums than previous years.