"Unprecedented in the history of the Medicare program"

Discussion in 'Healthcare/Insurance/Govt Healthcare' started by Greenbeard, Jan 11, 2013.

  1. Greenbeard
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    Greenbeard Gold Member

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    ASPE reminds us this week of what other indicators were already telling us: Growth In Medicare Spending Per Beneficiary Continues To Hit Historic Lows.


    This tracks well with the observation that Medicare hasn't grown as a percentage of GDP over the past few years:

    Government social benefits to persons: Medicare (W824RC1)/Gross Domestic Product, 1 Decimal (GDP)
    [​IMG]

    Also picked up in S&P's health care indices:
    [​IMG]
     
  2. dblack
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    dblack Gold Member

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    Cha-ching
     
  3. midcan5
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    midcan5 liberal / progressive

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    You mean the legislation passed by congress is working, jeez, who woulda thunk it.

    Watching my mom in her last year was a telling and sorta funny sight. 'Tests more tests, are you crazy!' Nine decades were enough. The problem with most things in life is people, oh, and the solution too.
     
  4. Luddly Neddite
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    Luddly Neddite Diamond Member

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    Medicare is one of the smartest things we've ever done. It wasn't perfect at the beginning and still isn't but it has consistently run in the black and still pays for itself.

    I must say that when I first learned that I had to keep paying for it after I retired, I was annoyed but really, it makes sense that we all have to continue to pay the premiums for our coverage.

    Let's just hope we can keep it out of the hands of the GObP.
     
  5. Greenbeard
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    Greenbeard Gold Member

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    In related news, Medicare continued ramping up some of its reforms this month:


     
  6. Greenbeard
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    Greenbeard Gold Member

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    The CBO's been very cautious about recognizing the slowdown in Medicare spending growth.

    Back in August of last year there was a little bit of fanfare because they had to go back and revise down their Medicare spending estimates for last year's budget outlook: Medicare spending forecast reduced in new CBO analysis
    Well, yesterday the new budget outlook (now extending through 2023, not 2022) is out and--surprise!--they've had to again lower their Medicare spending estimates based on the exceptionally slow growth we've been seeing. That is, they've now lowered again the estimates they just had to lower in August.

    CBO: Medicare spending slowing faster than expected
    It's fascinating to see. You can actually look at each iteration of their spending projections table and watch their spending estimates for every single year over the next decade tick down each time.

    January 2012: The Budget and Economic Outlook: Fiscal Years 2012 to 2022 (Table 3-1, page 49)
    August 2012: An Update to the Budget and Economic Outlook: Fiscal Years 2012 to 2022 (Table 1-2, page 6)
    February 2013: The Budget and Economic Outlook: Fiscal Years 2013 to 2023 (Table 1-3, page 16)

    You've got to respect the empiricism and the caution they've exercised in only slowly acknowledging Medicare's unprecedented (and sustained) slowdown--it's taking them quite a while to come around on it. They say seeing is believing.
     
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2013
  7. Greenbeard
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    Greenbeard Gold Member

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    The CBO updated those February 2013 estimates today based on "additional data" and seeing continues to be believing. Another updated budget picture, another downward revision in Medicare spending. Another hundred billion dollars in projected Medicare costs over the next decade has melted away since the budget outlook was released three months ago.

     
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  8. lynn63
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    lynn63 Member

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    Higher out of pocket cost is definitely the key player in the reduction of healthcare spending. There isn't a single insurance company out there that doesn't love it when we don't obtain healthcare services since the premium becomes profit.

    Everyone is happy even with the future death numbers that will surely rise as a result of their accomplishments in reducing spending. The government wins since if you die they don't have to pay social security to you.

    By all means, give them a pat on the back for a good job well done!
     
  9. Katzndogz
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    Katzndogz Diamond Member

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    The government is reducing the cost spent per beneficiary by two very simple methods. One is they are just refusing to pay for many procedures. Two is that they are paying providers less than it cost those providers to provide the service. This means the providers themselves won't perform. Overall the expenditures go down.
     
  10. lynn63
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    lynn63 Member

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    That works great providing you don't get sick and you don't need one of those procedures that they are not going to pay for in the future.
     

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