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  4. Medicare Programs
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Lesson Plans
  1. Great Depression - Three Lessons (Library of Congress - Perry and Sauer)
      Provides an opportunity for research so that "...students will be able to gain a better understanding of why the government takes care of its people and how this type of welfare state started. Armed with this knowledge, they can then evaluate the current need of government programs, such as welfare, Medicare and Social Security, on the federal and state level." The three lessons are designed to take 2-3 weeks. 5-02

  1. -Pros and Cons of Expanding Medicare (
      "How an expansion would or would not affect the Medicare trust fund depends on so-far-undisclosed details. Most observers believe that only Americans 55 to 64 without job-based large-group coverage would be allowed to buy into Medicare and that those people would be charged premiums much higher than the roughly $100 a month Medicare enrollees currently pay. If the program was part of Medicare but premiums and benefit payouts were segregated within the program, the trust fund might be unaffected." 12-09

  2. Editorial: Making Medicare Unaffordable Is Not the Solution (CNN News)
      "Ryan is proposing a defined contribution plan. Everyone would get vouchers to buy private insurance. Voucher amounts would be set to rise at a rate far below the historical rate of increase in health care costs, meaning that more of the cost will fall on the shoulders of senior citizens each year. His hope is that this will force costs down. The more likely effect is that more and more senior citizens will find adequate insurance unaffordable." 04-11

  3. GAO: Americans owe $43 Trillion in Debt (MSNBC News)
      "Meanwhile on Thursday Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan praised the virtues of a consumption tax, which economists such as Laurence Kotlikoff have argued would be one equitable way to help pay the staggering cost of unfunded liabilities for Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security."

      "According to the General Accountability Office, the governmentís fiscal watchdog, the federal governmentís net liabilities, unfunded commitments, and other obligations now amount to more than $43 trillion, or about $350,000 for every full-time worker." 3-05

  4. Preparing for Long-Term Care (ABC News)
      "Jointly funded by the federal and state governments, Medicaid provides health insurance to the poor as well as those who are 65 years and older, disabled or eligible for other government aid. Medicaid offers Medicare beneficiaries assistance with their out-of-pocket expenses and also covers the costs of prescription drugs, eyeglasses and hearing aids as well as other services not covered by Medicare. A key benefit of Medicaid is that nursing home benefits outlast those offered by Medicare which always end after the first 100 days in each benefit period." 04-06

  5. Recession Drains Social Security and Medicare (New York Times)
      "Even as Congress hunted for ways to finance a major expansion of health insurance coverage, the Obama administration reported Tuesday that the financial condition of the two largest federal benefit programs, Medicare and Social Security, had deteriorated, in part because of the recession."

      "As a result, the administration said, the Medicare fund that pays hospital bills for older Americans is expected to run out of money in 2017, two years sooner than projected last year. The Social Security trust fund will be exhausted in 2037, four years earlier than predicted, it said." 05-09


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