Yet the way that these private plans are paid today is extremely inefficient. While plans “bid” to offer coverage, actual payments to plans are based on administrative benchmarks. This is why the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission has routinely supported introducing “competitive bidding” into the program. While details vary by proposal, this would tie beneficiaries’ premiums to some plan in the market, be it a private plan or traditional Medicare itself. This would ensure financial neutrality between the two programs — incentivizing beneficiaries to seek out lower-cost plans — while also saving $275 billion over 10 years if it were structured similar to the Affordable Care Act’s exchanges.