Medicare trust fund extended

May 1, 2000

Pharmaceutical Representative

A report recently released by the Medicare Trustees projected that the life of the Medicare Trust Fund has been extended until 2023 – eight years longer than had been projected last year. This is a major change from 1993, when President Clinton received the trustees report projecting that Medicare would become insolvent in 1999.

A report recently released by the Medicare Trustees projected that the life of the Medicare Trust Fund has been extended until 2023 – eight years longer than had been projected last year. This is a major change from 1993, when President Clinton received the trustees report projecting that Medicare would become insolvent in 1999.

Despite the good news, however, the president pointed out that Medicare still faces daunting demographic and health challenges. The president also emphasized his comprehensive plan to make Medicare more competitive and efficient; modernize its benefits including adding a voluntary prescription drug benefit; and dedicating part of the budget surplus to meeting the future financial shortfall. Based on preliminary analysis, these policies are projected to extend the life of Medicare beyond 2030.

The report also revealed that Medicare premiums for a couple are $200 lower this year than they were estimated to be in the 1993 Trustees' projections. In 1993, the projected Part B premium for 2000 was $54.50. Today, it is actually $45.50 per month – a 17% decrease from the Trustees' 1993 projections. For an elderly couple, this is an annual savings of more than $200. PR

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