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Drew Altman: 3 Takeaways From the Medicare Trustees Report

In his latest column for The Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank, Drew Altman dives into this week’s release of the Social Security and Medicare Trustees Report to discuss the good news that may have been missed. All previous columns by Drew Altman are available online.

3 Takeaways From the Medicare Trustees Report

In his latest column for The Wall Street Journal’s Think Tank, Drew Altman dives into this week’s release of the Social Security and Medicare Trustees Report to discuss the good news that may have been missed.

How Much Is Enough? Out-of-Pocket Spending Among Medicare Beneficiaries: A Chartbook

This new analysis and chartbook examines out-of-pocket spending among Medicare beneficiaries, including spending on health and long-term care services and insurance premiums, using the most current year of data available from a nationally representative survey of people on Medicare. It explores which types of services account for a relatively large share of out-of-pocket spending, which groups of beneficiaries (including by age, gender, health status, and chronic conditions) are especially hard hit by high out-of-pocket costs, and trends in out-of-pocket spending between 2000 and 2010.

Medicaid Spending Growth in the Great Recession and Its Aftermath, FY 2007-2012

This report presents data on changes in Medicaid’s enrollment and spending between federal fiscal year 2007 and federal fiscal year 2012, a period which includes the worst economic downturn in the United States since the Great Depression. The paper also examines what factors drove Medicaid spending over the period, and concludes that overall spending growth from 2007 to 2012 was driven largely by the enrollment growth that resulted from many people losing jobs and income during the recession. However, on a per enrollee basis, Medicaid spending has grown more slowly than other sectors of the health system.

Paying for Prescribed Drugs in Medicaid: Current Policy and Upcoming Changes

The federal government has proposed new rules that aim to make Medicaid outpatient drug reimbursement policies more closely match the cost of obtaining and filling prescriptions. However, the change in policy may have varying effects on reimbursement, depending on the state’s current approach and the type of drug in question. This paper explains current Medicaid pharmacy reimbursement methodology and examines the potential effect of the proposed rule changes.