IMPROVEMENTS IN MEDICARE FOR SENIORSJun 4th, 2013 | By Sharon Shaw Elrod MSW EdD | Category: Social Security & Medicare
2013 Medicare Trustees’ Report Now Available
The 2013 Medicare Trustees’ Report is now available for public review. It is good news for seniors because it cites only a small increase in beneficiary spending. Marilyn Tavenner, Administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, said this:
“Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, we are taking important steps to improve the delivery of care for seniors with Medicare. These reforms aim to reduce spending while improving the quality of care, and are an important down payment on solving Medicare’s long term financial issues,” (AARP blog)
Medicare Spending Shows Only Small Increase
The report reveals only a small increase in spending per beneficiary–1.7% per year from 2010 to 2012. Increases should continue to be modest over the next several years. As a result, Medicare is expected to continue to be fully solvent through 2026, two years longer than previous projections. Payroll taxes fund most of Medicare services; the same is true for Social Security.
In November, Part B premium will be determined; the Trustees’ report anticipates the premium will not change from the current $104.90 per month. That is additional good news for seniors, because if that estimate holds, they will not see a decrease in their monthly Social Security checks from which most Part B premiums are paid.
Medicare continues to be the primary means by which senior citizens today receive quality medical services in the United States. Just as Social Security offers financial stability to most seniors, Medicare ensures the availability of medical care when seniors need it most.