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Assessing the Effects of the Economy on the Recent Slowdown in Health Spending

Introduction Health spending has been growing at historically low levels in recent years. The Office of the Actuary (OACT) in the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services reports that national health spending grew by 3.9% each year from 2009 to 2011, the lowest rate of growth since the federal government began keeping…

Health Coverage and Expenses: Impact on Older Women’s Economic Well-Being

In this article in the Journal of Women, Politics & Policy, researchers from the Kaiser Family Foundation examine how health issues that women face over the course of their lives, as well as policies that shape Medicare, Medicaid and other supplemental coverage, can affect retired women’s economic well-being. They found that…

Estimates of Medicare Beneficiaries’ Out-of-Pocket Drug Spending in 2006

This report projects the impact of the new Medicare drug benefit on out-of-pocket spending for people who enroll in 2006. This analysis from November 2004 estimates that 6.9 million beneficiaries are projected to be affected by the coverage gap (the so-called “doughnut hole”) in the standard Part D drug benefit.…

The News Media and “Entitlement Reform”

In the coming debate about the deficit, policymakers will struggle to craft a package of spending reductions and new revenues that both Democrats and Republicans can agree on, totaling as much as four trillion dollars over ten years.  Medicare, Medicaid and potentially the Affordable Care Act will have their turn…

Medicare Spending Limits: Issues and Implications

Several major deficit-reduction plans include provisions that would impose an explicit limit on the growth in Medicare spending. In general, such limits would trigger cuts if Medicare spending grows more rapidly than a target, such as the growth in the economy. This brief prepared for the Kaiser Family Foundation describes…

Medicare Advantage 2010 Data Spotlight: Plan Availability and Premiums

This data spotlight examines changes in the availability and premiums of private Medicare Advantage options for Medicare beneficiaries in 2010 as the annual open enrollment period begins. While the number of plans available in 2010 declined somewhat from 2009, the analysis finds that Medicare beneficiaries on average have 33 Medicare…

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.