Skip to main content
Tags: social security | medicare | treasury | funds

Social Security, Medicare Go-Broke Dates Pushed Back

Social Security, Medicare Go-Broke Dates Pushed Back
(Dreamstime)

Monday, 06 May 2024 04:48 PM EDT

The go-broke dates for Medicare and Social Security have been pushed back as an improving economy has contributed to changed projected depletion dates, according to the annual Social Security and Medicare trustees report Monday.

Still, officials warn that policy changes are needed lest the programs become unable to pay full benefits to retiring Americans.

Medicare’s go-broke date for its hospital insurance trust fund was pushed back five years to 2036 in the latest report, thanks in part to higher payroll tax income and lower-than-projected expenses from last year. Medicare is the federal government’s health insurance program that covers people age 65 and older and those with severe disabilities or illnesses. It covered more than 66 million people last year, with most being 65 and older.

Once the fund’s reserves become depleted, Medicare would be able to cover only 89% of costs for patients’ hospital visits, hospice care and nursing home stays or home health care that follow hospital visits.

Meanwhile, Social Security’s trust funds — which cover old age and disability recipients — will be unable to pay full benefits beginning in 2035, instead of last year’s estimate of 2034. Social Security would only be able to pay 83% of benefits.

Social Security Administration Commissioner Martin O'Malley called the report “a measure of good news," but told The Associated Press that “Congress still needs to act in order to avoid what is now forecast to be, in absence of their action, a 17% cut to people's Social Security benefits.”

About 71 million people — including retirees, disabled people and children — receive Social Security benefits.

Lawmakers have for years kicked Social Security and Medicare’s troubling math to the next generation. Social Security benefits were last reformed roughly 40 years ago, when the federal government raised the eligibility age for the program from 65 to 67. The eligibility age has never changed for Medicare, with people eligible for the medical coverage when they turn 65.

Congressional Budget Office report ing has stated that the biggest drivers of debt rising in relation to GDP are increasing interest costs and spending for Medicare and Social Security. An aging population drives those numbers.

The new report projects that Medicare’s income will be higher than last year’s because the number of covered workers and average wages will be higher. The report also notes that expenses should drop. That’s due mostly to a policy change regarding how Medicare Advantage rates are accounted for and lower-than-expected spending for inpatient hospital and home health agency services.

Medicare Advantage plans are a version of the federal program run by health insurers.

A March 2023 poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research shows that most U.S. adults are opposed to proposals that would cut into Medicare or Social Security benefits, and a majority support raising taxes on the nation’s highest earners to keep Medicare running as is.

The future of Social Security and Medicare has become a top political talking point as President Joe Biden and Republican former President Donald Trump both campaign for reelection this year.

Biden, a Democrat, has vowed to rebuff any Republican-led efforts to cut Medicare or Social Security benefits to brace for the shortfall. He's pitched raising taxes on people making $400,000 or more a year, to shore up Medicare. He has not offered up a plan for Social Security, however.

Trump, in an interview with CNBC in March, indicated he would be open to cuts to Social Security and Medicare. The former president said “there is a lot you can do in terms of entitlements, in terms of cutting.”

Nancy Altman, president of Social Security Works, an advocacy group for the social insurance program, said Monday's report shows that “Congress should take action sooner rather than later to ensure that Social Security can pay full benefits for generations to come.”

Copyright 2024 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.


StreetTalk
The go-broke dates for Medicare and Social Security have been pushed back as an improving economy has contributed to changed projected depletion dates, according to the annual Social Security and Medicare trustees report Monday.
social security, medicare, treasury, funds
655
2024-48-06
Monday, 06 May 2024 04:48 PM
Newsmax Media, Inc.

Sign up for Newsmax’s Daily Newsletter

Receive breaking news and original analysis - sent right to your inbox.

(Optional for Local News)
Privacy: We never share your email address.
Join the Newsmax Community
Read and Post Comments
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
 
TOP

Interest-Based Advertising | Do not sell or share my personal information

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved
Download the NewsmaxTV App
Get the NewsmaxTV App for iOS Get the NewsmaxTV App for Android Scan QR code to get the NewsmaxTV App
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved