Ongoing deficit-reduction negotiations should limit any cost-saving changes to Medicare to dropping dual-eligibles and allowing drug price negotiations, according to senior Democratic senators.
Sens. Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) and Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) told reporters Monday that they would accept changes to Medicare that would allow the program to remove so-called dual eligible beneficiaries and put them instead in the Medicaid program—which would require states to share the cost of their care—and to allow negotiations with drugmakers to drive down the cost of medications. They estimated each approach would save more than $100 billion annually.