Obamacare Offers Slight Improvement to Medicare Outlook
by ABC Digital
(WASHINGTON) -- A new government review shows that the passage of the Affordable Care Act -- also known as Obamacare -- has extended the life of the Medicare Hospital Insurance Trust Fund by nearly a decade.
According to a press release from the Department of the Treasury, the Medicare HI Trust Fund now has sufficient funding to cover its obligations through 2026, two years later than was projected last year. In the last report issued before Obamacare was passed, the trust fund was expected to run out in 2017.
A separate review from the Social Security Board of Trustees determined that the Old Age, Survivor's and Disability Insurance fund will last until 2033. The Department of the Treasury's press release points out that at that point, annual revenues from the dedicated payroll tax would be enough to fund approximately 75 percent of the scheduled benefits through 2087.
Despite the improvements, both Medicare and Social Security face added difficulty as the baby boom generation begins to retire. Because of that, both Democrats and Republicans have put forth proposals to extend the lives of the two entitlement programs.
The two sides remain far apart, however. Republicans hope that any budget agreement will include deep spending cuts, while Obama is seeking a deal including cuts in government spending, such as reductions in entitlement programs, but also tax increases.
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