Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Casey Pushes to Halt Hikes for Medicare Premiums

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Casey Pushes to Halt Hikes for Medicare Premiums

Article excerpt

Millions of seniors at risk of facing higher Medicare costs in 2016 would escape the increases under a U.S. Senate bill introduced this week, Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa., said Thursday.

Mr. Casey said he and nine other sponsors, all Democrats, are trying to rally bipartisan support for the legislation meant to hold Medicare Part B premiums and deductibles level for all enrollees next year. About 30 percent of Part B beneficiaries - some 15 million people nationwide - could face a 52 percent increase in premiums next year under projections from the trustees who oversee Medicare.

"Allowing these premium increases to go into effect would put a new financial strain on seniors who are already struggling to make ends meet and could have a negative impact on economic growth," Mr. Casey said during a conference call with reporters.

His staff estimated the legislation, if passed, could cost in the "high single billions or low double-figure billions" of dollars next year. …

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