April 17, 2015

Department of Labor Releases Proposal to Protect Retirement Savings

The Alliance, along with 40 other major groups, has come out in support of a proposal made by the Department of Labor (DoL) to protect Americans’ retirement savings. Members of the SaveOurRetirement.org coalition, a diverse collection of public interest groups, civil rights leaders, and labor unions including the Alliance, commended the public release of the rule to protect Americans from conflicts of interest when brokers and other financial advisers give retirement investment advice. Read more about the proposal.

Senate Passes Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) Replacement
On Tuesday, the Senate approved by a vote of 92-8 a measure to replace the formula that determines how doctors are paid through Medicare, sending the bill, previously passed by the House of Representatives, to President Barack Obama’s desk for approval. The President has indicated that he intends to sign the legislation.

The final bill replaces the formula that Medicare currently uses to pay doctors, the “Sustainable Growth Rate” (SGR), over a period of five years.  Due to incorrect assumptions of rising health-care costs when the SGR formula was approved in 1997, Congress has since had to pass frequent, short term “doc fixes” to ensure that doctors were compensated fairly. The new formula will occasionally require similar legislation, but not as frequently.

Barbara J. Easterling, President of the Alliance, said, “While this legislation does much to fix some critical problems within Medicare, we are worried the piecemeal cost shifts onto beneficiaries will add up over time.” Read more about the SGR replacement.


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