Forbes July 30, 2021
Sally Pipes

Today, Medicare and Medicaid mark their 56th birthday. They were signed into law by President Lyndon Johnson to ensure that seniors and the poor had access to quality, affordable health coverage as part of his Great Society.

They’ve grown far beyond what their creators envisioned. In 1967, the House Ways and Means Committee forecast that the program would cost $12 billion by 1990. The actual tab that year was $110 billion—nearly 10 times higher. In 2019, Medicare spending was just under $800 billion.

Medicaid isn’t far behind. Spending on the program has surged from roughly $3 billion in 1967 to $613 billion in 2019. It now covers more than 74 million people—about one in five Americans. In 1967, just under...

Today's Sponsors

Canton & Company

Today's Sponsors

Curation Health

Today's Sponsor


Topics: Govt Agencies, Healthcare System, Insurance, Medicaid, Medicare
AHA recommends focal points for next decade of Medicare and Medicaid innovation
Podcast: LIVE with Chiquita Brooks-LaSure, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Administrator
Innovation At The Centers For Medicare And Medicaid Services: A Vision For The Next 10 Years
Covid-19 Vaccination Perceptions Among Socially Vulnerable Medicare and Medicaid Members: Experience from a National Health Plan Outreach Program
The Little-Known Agency That’s Trying To Boil The Ocean—A Look At CMMI’s Decade Of Trying To Change Medicare & Medicaid