America's senior citizens are having trouble paying their medical bills and are looking to the government to help them out. Anna Price of Washington is spending $25 per week on adult diapers for her husband and that is draining their life savings.
Last week the Senate took a sizable step to ease the burden on the Prices and millions of other Americans by passing the Medicare Catastrophic Coverage Act, the most dramatic expansion of federal health insurance since its enactment in 1965. That same day the House derailed a bill that would have provided home health care for the chronically ill. It was a reminder that the Federal Government, too, has difficulty paying rising medical costs.
Read that last line again.
"the Federal Government, too, has difficulty paying rising medical costs."
The Medicare extension breezed through the Senate (86 to 11) as it had through the House (328 to 72) the week before, largely because of its self- financing mechanism. The program is to be paid for by Medicare's 32 million beneficiaries, who will be charged an additional $4 monthly premium plus an income-based surtax.
Breezed through both houses. Amazing how easily they vote to spend OUR money.
The day before the vote, 2,000 delegates at the National Council of Senior Citizens convention in Las Vegas took turns manning phones to remind Congressmen that the council's 4.5 million members were watching. The 28 million-member American Association of Retired Persons also supported the bill.
56 million eye's are watching.
It is not the last Congress will hear of long-term health care. Already the elderly absorb $258 billion in federal spending, two-thirds of the Health and Human Services budget
Two thirds of the HHS budget.
Think about that.
The Medicare Catastrophic Coverage Act easily passed through Congress in 1988. For what it's worth, 1988 was also an election year.
The following year it was repealed.