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GOP Plan to Raise Medicare Eligibility Age to 67 Would Cost $8 Billion

Republicans have advocated for increasing the age of Medicare Eligibility from 65 to 67. They say that doing so will save the Federal government $6 billion dollars.

But here’s the problem. When you don’t allow older folks to enroll in Medicare, they have one of 5 choices: 1. They will have to get their Medical insurance through their employer who will have to try and get private group insurance for his older workers, which will be an additional cost to businesses. 2. If they aren’t employed they will have to purchase private health insurance which is prohibitively expensive for most retirees — that is, much more expensive than Medicare. 3. They don’t have any medical insurance, which means they will die. 4. They will have to use state based Medicaid to pay for their health care. 5. For those folks left in Medicare premiums will rise if younger, healthier seniors are excluded from the program.

So, in total, the Kaiser Family Foundation estimates that the additional cost to taxpayers, small businesses and seniors of raising the Medicare age to 65? $8 billion.

You do the math. Taxpayer cost saving at federal level for raising Medicare eligibility age to 65 = $6 billion. Additional taxpayer cost for raising Medicare eligibility age to 67? $8 billion.

The net effect? $2 billion in additional cost.

You know that’s the problem with this group of “young gun” GOP’ers like Eric Cantor, Paul Ryan and Marco Rubio. They don’t understand the business concept of “cost benefit.”

About Georgeana Mimms

Georgeana Mimms was a researcher at the Social Policy Lab of the Andrus Gerontology Center at the University of Southern California, Deputy Director of the Asociation Pro Personas Mayores and a Special Consultant to the Los Angeles County Area Agency on Aging.