Medicare Solvency Extended to 2026 According to New Medicare Trustees' Report
June 4, 2013 04:40 PM
The Medicare Board of Trustees, officially known as, “The Boards of Trustees, Federal Hospital Insurance and Federal Supplementary Medical Insurance Trust Funds,” issued their 2013 annual report last week. The 280-page report outlined the health of Medicare’s Part A, B and D programs – and indicated that total expenditures for home health care in 2012 was $18.6 billion for Parts A and B combined.
The Trustee’s report noted some positive trends, specifically stating that, “the estimated depletion date for the trust fund is 2026, two years later than was shown in last year’s report.” It is believed that the additional two years of solvency for the Medicare Trust fund will take some of the immediate pressure off of recent calls to overhaul or reform the program in order to extend its solvency.
The report stated that home health expenditures have declined for two years in a row, despite serving an older and more vulnerable population. The report projects home health expenditures to grow more slowly over the next ten years than many other sectors of Medicare, helping to rebut claims by some that home health spending is out of control.
News that the Medicare Part A Trust Fund’s solvency has been extended by an additional two years is positive, however NAHC is concerned that there are still many threats to the program in general and to beneficiaries’ access to home health care in particular.
Home care advocates must continue to make the case that the Medicare home health benefit has been cut too much already and should not sustain further cuts or copays to extend Medicare solvency, reduce the deficit, or offset the costs of fixing the Medicare physician payment formula.
NAHC encourages all of its members to contact their elected officials and urge them to oppose proposals to add a home health copayment or to make any additional cuts to Medicare home health payments.
To oppose hospice cuts, click here.
To view the complete Medicare Trustee’s Report, please click here.