Coalition Members Meet with the Office of Representative-elect Laurel Lee

January 24, 2023

Three members of the Coalition for Medicare Choices (CMC) met prior to the formal swearing-in of the 118th U.S. House of Representatives with the office of Representative-elect Laurel Lee (R-FL-15) to discuss the value Medicare Advantage delivers to seniors and individuals with disabilities.

Coalition member Mari shared why Medicare Advantage is important to her.

“I like telehealth,” she said, noting that she has a weakened immune system. “It’s hard for me to get into a doctor’s office, so a lot of times I’m able to just schedule a tele-visit.”

Mari also praised the SilverSneakers program for the free gym memberships it provides. She lauded Medicare Advantage for providing affordable national coverage.

“With Medicare Advantage, I chose a plan where I could go out nationwide for treatment and I can have treatment in other parts of the country,” she said. “So my [Medicare Advantage] allows flexibility and it’s affordable for me. I don’t have to worry about where I seek treatment.”

Representative-elect Lee’s staff member noted that the flexibility came as “a pleasant surprise.”

Mari concluded by explaining how Medicare Advantage helps her prepare for her future, and summarized by adding, “It’s one premium for everything. I want one premium to do it all, and it does, and it’s much less stressful.”

Kendra, a coalition advocate, talked about how much her father, a United States Army Veteran, relies on Medicare Advantage.

“In addition to his coverage through the VA [Veterans Administration], he also has a Medicare Advantage plan, and I think the value of that plan really showed itself when he was diagnosed with cancer,” she said. “It was a very long two years of recovery, then he had a massive heart attack. He’s now got a pacemaker, but so much of these things Medicare Advantage covers which has just been a blessing to our family.”

She continued, “Most recently, during the pandemic, one of the things that really stood out to me [is that] as a Medicare Advantage member, [my father] and his wife were able to have an LPN come to their house and give them their vaccinations.”

Coalition member Ernie noted that “29 million Americans and over 2.5 million people right here in Florida choose Medicare Advantage because of the programs and the benefits it provides.”

Pointing out that mental health has become an issue for many, he went on to share that seniors need Medicare Advantage. “Home care gives us support. That’s a biggie because being in one’s home gives us peace of mind which enhances good mental health, which over the last few years has become a very serious problem.”

Representative-elect Lee’s staff member said he was familiar with Medicare Advantage due to his time working at the Florida Department of Elder Affairs. He mentioned the importance of at-home care and telehealth benefits for seniors, calling the latter “a great benefit for folks.”

He concluded the meeting by noting that Representative-elect Lee’s office will “be there to help” when it comes to Medicare Advantage.

The CMC is thankful to the office of Representative-elect Lee for meeting with our Coalition members.