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These Foundation resources shed light on how the ongoing national debate about deficit reduction may affect Medicare, Medicaid and other health-care programs.  These resources include analysis of specific savings proposals, polling on the public’s views of deficit-reduction options, summaries and comparisons of relevant elements of major deficit-reduction plans, and explanatory briefs and backgrounders describing key issues related to the debate. This page highlights some key resources examining deficit reduction and provides you with the standard search result page for a site-wide search on the deficit reduction tag.

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Transforming Medicare into a Premium Support System: Implications for Beneficiary Premiums

This study illustrates why geography would matter for Medicare beneficiaries under a premium support system that relies on a competitive bidding process envisioned under several key Medicare reform proposals. It examines potential changes in the premiums paid by Medicare beneficiaries under a payment approach that caps federal contributions per beneficiary…

Kaiser Health Tracking Poll: August 2012

This poll, conducted as the GOP prepares for its national convention, finds that the Affordable Care Act is not the top health care priority among Republicans. While jobs are still the number one issue for Republicans, when asked about the health care issues that will impact their vote this fall,…

Comparison of Medicare Premium Support Proposals

This brief provides a side-by-side comparison of recent proposals to transform Medicare into a premium support program and slow the future growth in Medicare spending. These proposals each would convert Medicare from a defined benefit program, in which beneficiaries are guaranteed coverage for a fixed set of benefits, to a…

Prescription Drug Procurement and the Federal Budget

This brief commissioned by the Foundation considers areas where Medicare faces limited opportunity for market-based competition and price negotiation to drive down drug spending. These areas include drug purchasing for low-income people enrolled in Part D plans who face minimal cost-sharing requirements, and purchasing certain unique drugs, such as biologicals,…

Medicare’s Role for Dual Eligible Beneficiaries

About 9 million low-income seniors and younger people with disabilities in the United States are covered by both Medicare and Medicaid. This brief examines the role of Medicare in providing health coverage for these beneficiaries. Medicare is the primary source of health insurance, while Medicaid provides supplemental coverage, helping with…

Kaiser Health Tracking Poll — February 2012

In the midst of continuing debate on the future of the Medicare program, the February Kaiser Family Foundation Tracking Poll finds most Americans and most seniors favor the status quo, though arguments about the program’s solvency have the potential to sway opinion toward new proposals. The survey also gauges public…

Restructuring Medicare’s Benefit Design: Implications for Beneficiaries and Spending

Several deficit-reduction plans have proposed combining Medicare’s separate deductibles for hospital and physician services, standardizing cost sharing across types of benefits, and establishing a new limit on annual out-of-pocket costs for beneficiaries. A new Kaiser Family Foundation study examines the potential implications of proposals to revamp Medicare’s cost-sharing requirements as…

Analysis of Medicare Prescription Drug Plans in 2011 and Key Trends Since 2006

This report presents findings from an analysis of the Medicare Part D marketplace in 2011 and changes in drug coverage and costs since 2006. It presents key findings related to Medicare drug plan premiums, the subsidy for low-income beneficiaries, the coverage gap, benefit design and cost sharing, formularies, and utilization…

Special Needs Plans: Availability and Enrollment

Special Needs Plans are a form of Medicare Advantage plan authorized to provide a managed care option for beneficiaries with significant or relatively specialized care needs, including Medicare beneficiaries who are dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid, beneficiaries living in nursing homes or other institutions, and beneficiaries with severe chronic…

Medicaid and the Budget Control Act: What Options Will Be Considered?

On August 2, 2011, President Obama signed the Budget Control Act of 2011 into law. The Act was designed to reduce federal spending and raise the debt ceiling. It established the Joint Select Committee, also known as the “Super Committee,” tasked with decreasing projected deficits by $1.5 trillion between FY2012…