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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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Explaining Health Reform: Key Changes in the Medicare Advantage Program

This brief examines the changes in the 2010 health reform law affecting the Medicare Advantage program, which gives beneficiaries the option of enrolling in private insurance plans for their Medicare benefits, instead of the traditional fee-for-service program. The reform law will gradually reduce Medicare payments to these plans to bring…

Medicaid Financing Issues: Provider Taxes

Current law allows states to use revenue from provider taxes to help fund the state share of spending on Medicaid, a program that is jointly financed by the states and the federal government. Almost all states have at least one provider tax in place. This issue brief reviews the use…

Raising Medicare Premiums for Higher-Income Beneficiaries: Assessing the Implications

As policymakers consider ways to slow the growth in Medicare spending as part of broader efforts to reduce the federal debt or offset the cost of other spending priorities, some have proposed to increase beneficiary contributions through higher Medicare premiums. This issue brief explains provisions of current law that impose income-related premiums under Medicare Part B and Part D, describes recent proposals to modify these requirements, and analyzes the potential implications for the Medicare population.

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,…

The President’s FY 2005 Budget Proposal:  Overview and Briefing Charts

The President's FY 2005 Budget Proposal: Overview and Briefing ChartsThe overview and briefing charts present information on the President's FY 2005 budget proposal to Congress beginning with federal surplus/deficit spending historical data and a summary of the overall composition of the Administration's budget request. The charts then detail information on…

The Budget Control Act of 2011: Implications for Medicare

Beginning January 2013, Medicare spending will be subject to automatic, across-the-board reductions, known as “sequestration,” which is slated to reduce Medicare payments to plans and providers by up to 2 percent. This sequestration results from provisions in the Budget Control Act of 2011, which raised the debt ceiling and will…

Implications Of A Federal Block Grant Program For Medicaid

This issue brief examines the broad implications of converting Medicaid to block grant financing, one of several ideas that have been put forth to help reduce the federal deficit. The paper, which does not analyze any specific proposal, notes that switching to block grant financing would fundamentally alter the Medicaid…

Proposed Changes to Medicare in the “Path to Prosperity”: Overview and Key Questions

This brief examines key Medicare provisions included in “The Path to Prosperity: Restoring America’s Promise,” a long-term budget proposal released by House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan on April 5, 2011, which outlines a strategy for reducing federal spending and reducing the national debt over time. The Medicare provisions are among…

Kaiser Health Tracking Poll — May 2011

Most Americans oppose the idea of converting Medicaid to block grant financing to reduce the federal deficit, and more than half want to see no reductions at all in Medicaid spending. One in five adults has received Medicaid benefits over time, and for most, experiences were positive, although one third…

How Popular Is The Idea Of Changing Medicare To A Defined Contribution Plan?

In March 2011, House Budget Committee Chair Paul Ryan released his “Path to Prosperity” budget plan, which included a proposal to change Medicare from a defined benefit program into one in which the government pays a specific amount towards the cost of private health insurance for each enrollee. Surveys conducted…