LETTER: Chelmsford Seniors Should Be Concerned About Brown

The following is a letter to the editor



Dear Editor,

According to the 2010 Census, 5,467 people age 65 and older live in Chelmsford, and every one of them should be deeply concerned about Republican Scott Brown’s health care policy.  The centerpiece of Brown’s health care policy is working to repeal the Affordable Care Act, the federal health care reform law known as ObamaCare.

National health care advocacy organization Community Catalyst Action Fund released a new analysis finding that, if the Affordable Care Act (“ObamaCare”) is repealed, senior citizens in Chelmsford and across Massachusetts will be saddled with higher costs and fewer benefits.

ObamaCare, as it is known, lowers seniors’ Medicare premiums and out-of-pocket costs by an estimated $500 per year.  This means that, if Republican Scott Brown gets his way and repeals ObamaCare, seniors’ Medicare costs will go up about $5,000 over the next decade.

ObamaCare also fills in the so-called “donut hole” in prescription drug coverage for seniors.  Between January and August of this year, 31,000 Massachusetts residents hit the “donut hole.”  ObamaCare saved those Medicare beneficiaries an average of over $600 per person.  This means that, if Republican Scott Brown gets his way and repeals ObamaCare, seniors’ prescription drug costs will go up dramatically.

Also, during the first eight months of 2012, over 500,000 Medicare beneficiaries across Massachusetts took advantage of no-cost preventive services thanks to ObamaCare.  If Republican Scott Brown gets his way and repeals ObamaCare, seniors will lose these no-cost preventive services.

Policy decisions made in Washington D.C. have a real and direct impact on the residents of Chelmsford.  The health care policy that Republican Scott Brown is advocating would have a decidedly harmful impact on Chelmsford's seniors.


Matthew Helman

Communications Director, Progress Mass

Alison October 27, 2012 at 06:20 PM
This is stuff and nonsense. Brown has done more for Massachusetts than Warren ever has.
dennis byron October 27, 2012 at 07:45 PM
This article is from some Warren for Senator Communist-like front group actually run by political consultants paid to scare us seniors. The Community Catalyst report it mentions is also deceptive. Both Catalyst and Warren are poor advocates for us seniors. In its analysis, Community Catalyst purposely leaves out 200,000-300,000 Massachusetts seniors -- disproportionately the poorest of us Massachusetts seniors -- on Part C Medicare health plans. We are the seniors who already get the global-payment/coordinated-care-type plans glorified by Obamacare advocates and the Massachusetts political hacks that recently passed new price-fixing legislation. Obamacare cuts over $700 billion from what should be spent on Medicare -- or kept in the Medicare Part A trust fund if not needed. Obamacare is taking the $700 billion from Medicare and spending it instead on insurance for non-seniors (see the Medicare actuary, all annual reports since 2010). As for the so-called drug savings touted by the Warren front group and Warrent herself, in Massachusetts they are almost non-existent. None of the Democrat's statistics take into account what Massachusetts Prescription Advantage or MassHealth pays for seniors on Medicare. The Assistant HHS Director of Planning has said the effects of these state program are not factored into the calculations he did and that Catalyst and these paid politcal operatives are using in their Mediscare propaganda. You can't save what you didn't spend.
dennis byron October 28, 2012 at 11:25 AM
I Care Your statement is based on an accounting trick. The non-partisan Medicare Actuary has disproven that claim with the simple common sense analysis that you can't spend the same dollar two different ways (except on the books of the U.S. Federal government apparently). The $716 billion cannot be used to increase the solvency of the Part A trust fund and be used to fund subsidies for non senior health care insurance. I have no problem with non-seniors getting health care insurance but it should not be paid for with the taxes I paid for 45 years to cover my healthcare. So if the money is spent for free insurance for non seniors in 2014, it won't be there for seniors in 2016 no matter how the governmnet keeps the books.
Anna Bucciarelli October 28, 2012 at 01:32 PM
Agree ... no further explanation necessary! Except to extend your comment to include ... "than Warren ever would."
resident October 29, 2012 at 06:45 AM
and what would that be?
resident October 29, 2012 at 07:06 AM
you need to read a little. the 700 billion does not come out of seniors pockets. it has nothing to do with you paying a penny more. it comes from the payout to the providers. it has nothing to do with what you pay. and has nothing to do with what services you will be afforded. and you do not already get the 'donut hole' closed. the only way that is closed is with the new health care law. you sound like you are lucky enough at this point having reached that 'hole' but when or if you do, it can be devastating. also, the big picture here is about a voucher plan which the republicans want. that means you get one fixed amount of money per year to pay for your health care. if you surpass that, you owe the rest. there are no cost of living adjustments in that plan. so, as health care goes up, your allowance stays the same. obviously meaning more out of pocket. also, those 'state factors' you referring to only apply to massachusetts and do not cover the donut hole.
Tyler Jozefowicz November 10, 2012 at 04:49 PM
what don't you understand? Republican Brown will work to repeal Obamacare,. the benefits described are in Obamacare. As far as Warren not doing anything. Elizabeth warren will fight to KEEP Obamacare. If it is repealed plan on paying MORE for your prescription drugs
Tyler Jozefowicz November 10, 2012 at 04:59 PM
Dennis: you are wrong. Even with Medicare Advantage, there is STILL a prescription drug donut hole. Obamacare REMOVES that. It is real for anyone getting 4 or 5 prescriptions and most seniors have at least that. It already saved me and hundreds of thousands of Massachusetts seniors hundreds if not thousands. The $700 B is for efficiencies and waste, and administrative costs- no benefits will be effected and no impact to the debt; Ryan had the same figure in his Budget. Exact figure. You can't complain about waste , then complain when it is addressed that benefits are effected . Your complaint is bogus , and your statement is untrue.
Tyler Jozefowicz November 10, 2012 at 05:04 PM
Hello Dennis: the $716B is a REDUCTION , meaning money NOT spent. what's it take, man. Republicans want to do the SAME THING. save wasted money. Again- nothing spent, money not spent on waste , fraud , administration.Benefits NOT effected. If you want to argue against Obamacare, you are addressing the wrong area.
Andrew Sylvia (Editor) November 12, 2012 at 02:48 AM
A comment has been deleted due to violations of the terms of use. Please talk about the subject of the article, not other users. Thanks.


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