Seniors are concerned about the future of their health care — and for good reason.

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) left patients with fewer options and rising premiums. Now, politicians in Washington are considering another overhaul of the American health care system that could eat away at the health care resources seniors currently enjoy. Many on the left argue that the only fix is to dive head-first into a single-payer Medicare for All system, but there’s a better solution that would put Americans, not bureaucrats, in control of health care decisions.

Seniors have specifically made their demands clear: They want easy access to their doctors and prescription drugs at lower costs. That’s where Healthcare for You comes into play and can offer a better alternative — a policy framework developed by the Job

Creators Network Foundation in partnership with Physicians for Reform, and a policy package mirrored by President Donald Trump’s America First Healthcare Plan. It would empower seniors to make their own medical decisions in consultation with the doctors they already know and trust.

That’s no small benefit, considering a recent survey from revealed more than 40% of those 65 and up say keeping their doctor is a top priority when choosing a Medicare plan. Another 27% said they were most concerned with maintaining low premiums and copays.

Millions of Americans lose their health care coverage each year because they switch jobs. Trump’s reform framework protects individuals by allowing them to choose a plan that will follow them regardless of employer, even into retirement. For seniors who plan to retire, or already have, they can access the doctor of their choice, instead of being limited to the options available to them under Medicare.

To address cost concerns, the reform package would expand access to personal health management accounts, also known as health savings accounts, funded by individuals’ pretax dollars. These accounts would put patients in control of their health care spending. Health care providers will need transparent pricing to attract customers. Competition between providers will spur even more innovation and lower prices across the board. Transparency and competition promote accountability as well.

The reform framework would also expand and promote access to the latest health care technologies — including telemedicine. Individuals, especially our seniors, should not be lumped into a one-size-fits-all policy that doesn’t allow them to pursue the innovative care that best fits their lifestyle. Seniors have already proven they’re ready to embrace telehealth options. In fact, the coronavirus pandemic sparked a 716% jump in telehealth usage for those on Medicare. More than 42% even reported that they plan to continue using telehealth options after the pandemic subsides.

Health care could also be streamlined for seniors. Today, physicians are forced to complete tests that patients don’t often need to protect themselves from frivolous lawsuits. The reform framework provides doctors with protection so they can develop the best personalized treatment plan with their patients rather than forcing them to complete, and pay for, unnecessary services.

Politicians may argue that the only way to fix the health care system in the U.S. is to build upon the crumbling cornerstone of the ACA, but seniors know that they and their families need more options. The America First Healthcare Plan and Healthcare for You provides the sturdy foundation the U.S. health care system needs to give seniors the peace of mind they deserve and more control over their own health care.

Dr. Eric Stader is a practicing family physician in Wisconsin and member of the Job Creators Network.


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