Medicare Trust Fund loses 4 years

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Wednesday, April 30, 2003

WASHINGTON — Also in the Medicare Trustees’ Report, projections for the program’s bankruptcy date have moved up four years to the year 2026. Earlier calculations had projected insolvency by 2030.

Officials say they’ve been predicting for years that healthcare funds for the elderly will be threatened by bankruptcy as more post-World War II baby boomers reach 65. In the report, the trustees say last year’s projections of Medicare’s decay were based on lower tax receipts being devoted to the program and higher expenditures for in-patient hospital care.
Trustees project that Medicare will have to start using its trust fund in 2013 to keep up with expenditures, three years earlier than anticipated a year ago.

President Bush has urged Congress to look at the Medicare program’s long-term road to insolvency by considering turning over more of the program to private insurance plans based on the belief that competition will keep health care costs down. HME

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