Health Reform Media Conference Call: New Study Disproves Claims That Medicare Cuts Don't 'Stick'

Friday, December 4, 2009 General News J E 4


Prof. Jonathan Gruber,

Department of Economics, MIT

James R. Horney,

Director of Federal Fiscal Policy, CBPP

Paul N. Van de Water,

Senior Fellow, CBPP

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities will hold a conference call briefing on Friday, December 4 at 11:00 a.m. (ET) to discuss a new analysis by two leading budget experts which finds that recent commentary claiming the House and Senate health bills are not really paid for -- because the track record shows that Congress will never allow the bills' Medicare savings to take effect -- is belied by the historical record.

The analysis, by James Horney and Paul Van de Water, former senior CBO officials now at the Center, examines the history of every Medicare cut that Congress has enacted in the past 20 years. It finds that the vast majority of these cuts have taken effect and produced substantial savings. Until now, no one had undertaken such an analysis, despite the many pronouncements on this matter in recent days.

The analysis also finds that much commentary citing Congressional action to stop scheduled cuts in Medicare payments to physicians reflects substantial misunderstanding of what has transpired in this area.

Another part of the analysis evaluates the provisions of the House and Senate bills that are designed to slow the growth of health care costs.

On the media conference call, Horney and Van de Water will present their findings. Eminent MIT health economist Jonathan Gruber will also participate and will assess the measures in the bills to restrain health care costs.

After opening remarks, the panelists will take questions.

To participate, please register by e-mailing, or by calling the Center's communications office at 202-408-1080.

We encourage you to register on-line at

CONTACT: Shannon Spillane, 202-408-1080,

/PRNewswire-USNewswire -- Dec. 3/

SOURCE Center on Budget and Policy Priorities


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