by Patrick Appel

Mike Lillis tries to understand why the debate over Medicare Advantage is so muffled:

Despite promises that private plans operating under MA could eventually save money, the cost to treat the average patient in the MA program is 14 percent higher than the cost to treat the average senior under traditional Medicare...Kathleen Stoll, deputy director of Families USA, a health care consumer group, said the relatively tepid nature of this year’s MA debate is some indication that even the most adamant defenders of the program recognize that the 14-percent discrepancy is too large.

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