Medicare Funds Stronger Than Previously Predicted – But Still in Trouble


Medicare funds – that are the most important payer of home health care services – are usually not running out quite as fast as previously predicted.

After a stronger economic recovery from the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic than previously expected, the yr through which Medicare will not have the funds to completely pay out what it must has been moved back by two years, in keeping with a government report.

That’s the excellent news. The bad news is that it has only moved back two years: from 2026 – which could be very soon – to 2028, which is barely form of soon.

After those funds hit that critical point, Medicare will only have the option to pay 90% of the scheduled advantages. Policymakers are obviously attempting to avoid attending to that time, and recently improved funds are a very good first step.

“Today’s report from the Trustees of the Social Security and Medicare trust funds shows that the strong economic recovery driven by my economic and vaccination plans has strengthened programs that hundreds of thousands of Americans depend on and has put our nation in a greater fiscal position,” President Joe Biden said in an announcement Thursday.

The problem is clearly relevant to home-based care because Medicare is its payer. At the identical time, it has also grow to be relevant in conversations in regards to the trend of bringing more care to the house, as that generally is a more cost-efficient setting.

“If we have a look at the issues that our health care delivery system has, the system that we’ve that’s unsustainable for the country, the Medicare trustees say by 2026 we’re going to expire of cash,” former U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicare Services (CMS) Administrator Seema Verma said in February. “And when it comes to options, we don’t wish to ration advantages. … And so really, the trail forward is value-based care.”

Value-based care is full-go in home health care, because the Home Health Value-Based Purchasing (HHVBP) Model will roll out nationwide on Jan. 1. It’s projected to avoid wasting billions.

At the identical time, providers are also engaging in value-based care models on their very own. A few of those value-based models are with Medicare Advantage (MA) plans, which have also been a point of contention in the case of funds running out.

Critics of directing contracting models – or the ACO Reach Model – consider that the federal government shouldn’t be engaging with private businesses while running out of cash. 

“It is totally baffling to me that the Biden administration wants to present the identical bad actors in Medicare Advantage free rein in traditional Medicare,” Warren said during a Senate Finance Committee hearing earlier this yr. “President Biden shouldn’t permit Medicare to be handed over to corporate profiteers. Doing so goes to extend costs and put more strain on the hospital insurance trust fund.”


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