Senator Stabenow Introduces Medicare at 50 Act
February 14, 2019
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) today introduced the Medicare at 50 Act (S.470) to give people between the ages of 50 and 64 years old the option of buying into Medicare. Millions of Americans approaching retirement or forced to retire early due to layoffs or mandatory retirement face increasing health care needs and rising costs. U.S. Senator Gary Peters (D-MI) is an original cosponsor of this legislation.
"Our legislation is a win-win for Michigan families," said Senator Stabenow. "It will help strengthen Medicare, lower costs, and improve care for millions of people."
"Providing anyone age 50 or older the option to buy into Medicare is a commonsense measure that will help expand access to affordable health care for millions of families across the country, including in Michigan," said Senator Peters.
Allowing more Americans to buy into Medicare has the potential to lower their costs, reinforce the existing Medicare program, and strengthen the existing health insurance marketplace. Recent polling from the Kaiser Family Foundation indicates that 77 percent of the public supports giving people between the ages of 50 and 64 the option to buy Medicare.
Today, 27% of adults approaching retirement are not confident that they can afford health insurance over the next year, and more than a quarter have issues navigating health insurance options, coverage decisions, and out-of-pocket costs. Many did not get the care they needed because of how much it would cost or kept a job or delayed retirement to keep their employer-sponsored health insurance.
U.S. Senators Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Kamala Harris (D-CA), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Ed Markey (D-MA), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Jack Reed (D-RI), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Tina Smith (D-MN), and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) also cosponsored the Medicare at 50 Act. Congressmen Brian Higgins (NY-26), John Larson (CT-01), Joe Courtney (CT-02), and Peter Welch (VT-AL) are introducing companion legislation in the House.