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For Immediate Release

Center for Public Integrity
Contact

Randy Barrett (202) 481-1256 or
Steve Carpinelli (202) 481-1225

Press Release

Why Medicare Is Broken

WASHINGTON -

It’s well known that the Medicare program is spiraling toward insolvency. The reason why is outlined in a new story by the Center for Public Integrity.

The story by David Nather explains the
complex ecosystem that keeps health care costs rising annually. The
bottom line:  Medicare is paying millions of dollars for procedures and
services that, based on available evidence, don’t really make sick
people better. Many of the questionable tests and procedures are
provided at doctor-owned facilities. That means as long as physicians
get paid for each medical service they give their patients, they have
little reason to ask whether a test or procedure is really necessary.

The political backdrop only adds to the crisis. Members of Congress
from both political parties loathe the idea of cutting Medicare
benefits for fear of drawing the wrath of elderly constituents. And so
the political paralysis continues – but time is running out.

Medicare is already growing faster
than Social Security, and it could become bigger and more expensive than
that program in the next 25 years. It is also growing faster than the
economy, and if that keeps up, Medicare could cause the national debt to
swell up to more than two-thirds of the gross domestic product in just
the next decade.

Read and link to the Center story, "Medicare: An Entitlement Out of Control."

###

The Center for Public Integrity is a nonprofit organization dedicated
to producing original, responsible investigative journalism on issues
of public concern. The Center is non-partisan and non-advocacy. We are
committed to transparent and comprehensive reporting both in the United
States and around the world.

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