Sunday, April 10, 2011

Who Needs Medicare?

A history lesson: Before Medicare came to the rescue in 1965, the poverty rate of Americans aged 65 or older was as high as 35.2 percent. Today, the poverty rate of the elderly is just 8.9 percent thanks to Medicare.

Before Medicare, few older Americans had health insurance because it was unaffordable. When they inevitably became ill, they spent down their savings to pay their medical bills, driving many into poverty--and that was before health care costs went through the roof. Research shows that net worth falls among adults whose parents do not have health insurance. Why is that? Because those children are not going to stand idly by while their parents get sick and die without medical care. So they spend down their savings to save mom and dad. And so on, and so on.

Who needs Medicare? Asked and answered.

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