Medicare Advantage is ripe for Comer’s oversight committee to investigate

Kay Tillow

May 11, 2023 5:40 am

(Getty Images)

Congressman James Comer, of Kentucky’s 1st District and chairman of the House Oversight Committee, is much in the news these days. The oversight committee is supposed to ensure the efficiency, effectiveness and accountability of the federal government and all its agencies.  Comer has been investigating everything from Chinese money laundering to Hunter Biden’s laptop to the origin of Covid-19.  Those may, indeed, be serious concerns, but there is a domestic health care issue that requires urgent attention.

Kentucky health care advocates have asked Rep. Comer to look into an issue central to the nation’s health and financial wellbeing.  Private, for-profit Medicare Advantage (MA) plans are siphoning billions from the Medicare Trust Fund while they delay and deny care to seniors and the disabled.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the government agency that oversees Medicare, is also in dire need of a thorough investigation. From 2008 to 2023 Medicare Advantage insurers collected $124 billion in overpayments, according to the Medicare Payment Advisory Panel. As terrible as it is to think of profiteers ripping off Medicare funds, it’s even worse that these Advantage plans are cheating on the care they owe to the patients.