The 2020 presidential race is heating up. However, despite the natural uncertainties surrounding any presidential election, preparations are already being made for some of Joe Biden’s proposals. Specifically, health insurers are already preparing for Biden’s “Medicare at 60” proposal, which could bring Medicare benefits to millions of Americans.

What is the “Medicare at 60” proposal? How are insurers preparing for the potential change? Finally, how likely is the “Medicare at 60” proposal to pass into law? We will answer all of these questions and more, but first, let’s look at the initial proposal.

What is the “Medicare at 60” Proposal?

“Medicare at 60” is one of the main proposals that the Biden campaign has made to reform healthcare and ultimately expand Medicare. In short, the reform would lower the standard age of Medicare eligibility (which is currently 65) to 60. Thus, this proposal would provide Original Medicare or Medicare Advantage to millions of older adults who would otherwise not yet qualify for Medicare. Naturally, many in Congress question how this reform will be financed, as Medicare is already facing budget issues. If a payroll tax cut is implemented, this will only make “Medicare at 60” even harder to pay for.

How are Insurers Preparing for “Medicare at 60?”

Many private insurers are preparing for the potential expansion of Medicare by making Medicare Advantage plans available to more Americans in 2021. If the proposal does pass into law, it will increase the size of the Medicare market. Thus, millions of older adults will need to make the choice between Original Medicare and Medicare Advantage. In anticipation of the change, private insurance brokers will need to expand their networks and infrastructure as soon as possible.

Is “Medicare at 60” Likely to Pass into Law?

Though many private insurers are already gearing up for the change, “Medicare at 60” is something of a long shot. If Donald Trump wins the election, it will almost certainly not happen. Even if Joe Biden wins, he will struggle to get sweeping Medicare legislation through a highly divided Congress. As a result, it’s difficult to say with certainty if a Joe Biden presidency will actually bring significant expansions to Medicare.

The Bottom Line

“Medicare at 60” will lower the official age to qualify for Medicare from 65 to 60. This, in turn, will grant Medicare access to millions of Americans. However, we will have to wait until the election and the following months to see if “Medicare at 60” actually passes into law!

If you’re interested in learning more about the Medicare Open Enrollment Period, contact Time for 65’s licensed partnered agents today. Fill out this form or give us a call today to see how we can help.