Will Medicare Be There When You Need It?
According to analysis from the Camden Health Database, 8% of patients seen each year in Camden are on Medicare. This week, these patients and others around the country who depend on Medicare to cover hospital stays received some unwelcome news.
Consistent with last year’s findings, the trustees of the Medicare program forecast that Medicare’s hospital fund (Part A) would begin to run out of money beginning in 2024.
Parts B and D, which cover outpatient care and prescription drugs respectively, don’t face insolvency because they automatically draw money from the U.S. Treasury.
According to the trustees, payments for hospitals and other inpatient care would be cut automatically if the Part A trust fund reaches insolvency.
An aging population and the rise of healthcare costs are driving Medicare’s bleak forecasts. This year, trustees said, the hospital fund will pay out $38 billion more in benefits than it collects in taxes and premiums from seniors and the disabled. The trustees stressed the need to look beyond the exhaustion date for Medicare to the toll health care costs are already taking. “A more immediate issue is the growing burden that the program places on the federal budget well before exhaustion of the trust funds,” the report said.
While the upcoming elections in November will drive a lot of talk and speculation over how to rein in the costs of Medicare spending, at the Coalition, we’re already solving this problem – one day at a time – one patient at a time.