The Medicaid Debate Should Matter to You

Most Americans do not think about Medicaid very much.  They think that it is just the health care program for poor people that they will not personally ever need.  If you live into old age, then you should be concerned about the debate over the program currently going on in Congress.

Medicaid is an extremely expensive government program intended to provide health care for the poorest Americans.

Medicaid is often an easy program for politicians to attack as too costly, because most Americans are not poor and do not think they will ever be poor enough to qualify for Medicaid.

Therefore, when a politician talks about cutting the costs of the program, it is easy for many people to nod their heads in agreement.

The problem is that Medicaid is not that simple.

Many people who do not think they will ever need Medicaid are mistaken, as The New York Times points out in "Plan on Growing Old? Then the Medicaid Debate Affects You."

Medicaid provides health care for a substantial number of the nation's elderly.

More than 60% of people in nursing homes have their care paid for by the program.  Many more receive home health care through the program. 

If you grow old and outlive your retirement funds - which is easy to do, given the costs of health care for the elderly - then you might need Medicaid to pay for your care someday.

That is not to say you should have an opinion one way or another in the debate over the program, but you should take a personal interest in it because your future interests are at stake.

Reference: New York Times (June 30, 2017) "Plan on Growing Old? Then the Medicaid Debate Affects You."


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