In order to fix Medicare for future generations, McConnell said legislation needs to be passed raising the eligibility age over time. And there should be "means testing" that prevents rich people from receiving government healthcare, he added.
"Why in the world should we be providing Medicare and probably Social Security either for millionaires (or) billionaires?" he asked. "I certainly don't think we can afford to be providing Cadillac healthcare for people who are millionaires and billionaires."
McConnell was careful to say he thinks nothing should change for anyone already 55 or older.
Ephraim McDowell President Vicki Darnell said the long-term viability of Medicare and Medicaid is a very important issue for Fort Logan Hospital.
"Healthcare is not sustainable as it is today," she said. "The Medicare program cannot go forward as it is."
Darnell said about 60 percent of the patients in the Ephraim McDowell network are either Medicare or Medicaid patients.
According to the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, often referred to as Obamacare, saves $716 billion that would otherwise be spent through Medicare.
A little more than a third of those savings come from cuts to how much Medicare pays healthcare providers like Ephraim McDowell and Fort Logan, while another 30 percent comes from cuts to how much the government pays for Medicare Advantage programs, according to researchers at the Washington Post.
The cuts are designed in theory to avoid cutting benefits to those enrolled in Medicare and Medicaid plans.
But McConnell and Darnell said cutting reimbursements to healthcare providers — essentially paying them less for the same service — would hurt those providers' ability to provide care in the first place.
McConnell said if Republicans take back enough power in the coming election, he would like to see that $716 billion in spending put back in the Medicare budget and have Obamacare repealed.
"It defies logic to assume that you can ask all of you to take care of more people with less resources," he said, referring to the medical community and the professionals gathered. "… No matter who gets elected, you can't repeal the math and everything I've told you today on the math side is true — not subject to spin, interpretation, but fact: this can not work for our country."