LinkPad: A Blueprint for Sound Policy

In the midst of the government shutdown, Americans' approval of Congress has dropped to just 5%, an all time low. It’s certainly a concerning time for our country, with more questions than answers for many Americans. In times like these, I think it’s important to take a step back and find a moment to focus on the positive. Today’s LinkPad reflects on Medicare Part D, a policy that successfully provides cost-effective quality care that satisfies 90% of beneficiaries.

  • Competition in Medicare Part D has helped keep costs down. On Prognosis Blog, President of the Healthcare Leadership Council, Mary R. Grealy shared an analysis of state-based insurance exchanges which similarly found that competition between health insurance plans helped drive down costs by as much as one-third.
  • An article in Slate adds to the list of comparisons between the roll out of Medicare Part D and health care reform, stating, “The basic lesson of Part D holds. Unless for some reason they're unable to make any progress whatsoever over the next six weeks, these problems are not any kind of serious threat to the program.”
  • The Wall Street Journal explores the shrinking Medicare Part D “doughnut hole,” and how the Affordable Care Act aims to close it by 2020.

With all that’s happening on the Hill, we hope that legislators continue to take note of the policies that work. Medicare Part D provides a blueprint for the kind of policies that work for patients and for the sustainability of the entire health system.