I am outraged that a bipartisan majority in the Senate has once again been blocked from consideration of legislation that would have a positive impact on the lives of American seniors and the quality of their healthcare. Because a few Senators failed to act in a responsible manner, starting next Tuesday, July 1, physicians will see a reimbursement cut of more than 10 percent, jeopardizing patients’ access to critical care; many low-income seniors will be left without the help they need to navigate the complex Medicare program; discrimination against mental health services will continue and parity will be postponed; seniors will be at risk because we have been blocked from guaranteeing access to outpatient therapy services and improving access to life-saving, money-saving, preventative care.
This bill, which passed the House by an overwhelmingly bipartisan 355-59 vote, represented a true compromise. Importantly, it was fully paid for through modest reductions in overpayments to private insurance companies.
America’s seniors should also be outraged at today’s vote. I urge the minority of Senators blocking this important action to reconsider. We have a responsibility to fix the Medicare system for the benefit of our most vulnerable seniors and our nation’s well-being.