Heritage’s new chart series, “Medicare at Risk: Visualizing the Need for Reform,” shows that, without the necessary structural reform, Medicare’s finances will have devastating consequences on the federal budget, not to mention taxpayers and seniors alike.
Medicare’s Impact on the Budget. Medicare spending is rising faster than any other part of the federal budget, and it’s a major driver of runaway deficit spending in the not-so-distant future. Retiring baby boomers and rising health care costs will cause Medicare’s shortfall to contribute to 81 percent of federal deficits by 2040. Clearly, the federal deficit cannot be contained without addressing Medicare’s structural problems.
Medicare’s Impact on Seniors. Obamacare did nothing to improve Medicare’s fiscal crisis. Even though Medicare spending falls by $421 billion under the health care law, the savings offset the cost of other provisions in Obamacare instead of shoring up Medicare’s deficits. Worse yet, Obamacare’s flawed method of controlling Medicare’s costs by cutting provider payments will significantly reduce seniors’ access to care. As the charts show, these profound cuts put 40 percent of providers in danger of closing their doors by 2050. As the number of beneficiaries rise, the number of providers cannot decrease without causing serious access issues.
Medicare reform is vital if the program is going to be ready to handle what’s to come. Explore the charts now >>