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CED releases new report: To Reform Medicare, Reform Incentives and Organization

In November 2011, CED released Alain C. Enthoven’s paper, To Reform Medicare, Reform Incentives And Organization, explaining how the principles of cost-responsible consumer choice among competing health-insurance plans, sometimes called “managed competition,” can both improve quality and reduce cost in the federal government’s Medicare program.

Medicare is both the essential “insurer of insurance” for the U.S. elderly population, and by far the most important cause of the long-term crisis in the federal budget. Its role as a cost driver in the budget is indirectly linked to rising cost throughout the U.S. healthcare industry. While its essential function of providing coverage to senior citizens must be fulfilled, its cost growth must be slowed – or else the federal government will be forced to make very painful choices, among which will be reneging on that commitment to our seniors. And ideally, the steps to control its cost growth should contribute to both cost savings and improvements in quality throughout the healthcare system.