This week, the Medicare trustees issued their report on the state of Medicare now and in the future. The bad news? They are now predicting the fund, which is actually a large trust, will bankrupt itself by 2024. The rising cost of healthcare is the number one reason for this prognosis. Here is the statement:
New technologies and interventions will continue to expand the capabilities of medicine and to affect the cost of health care in ways that are difficult to predict. Private stakeholders are redoubling their efforts to curb cost growth, but the extent of their success and the effects of these endeavors on Medicare’s costs are yet to be determined. Also unknown is how effective the significant federal health legislation enacted in 2010 will be at moderating cost growth for Medicare. If the legislation’s cost-reducing innovations in the delivery of and payment for health services were not successful, or if health care providers could not accommodate the slower growth in Medicare payment rates mandated by the new law, Medicare costs would be significantly higher than shown in the Trustees Report.